Report triggers Bears denial

LAKE FOREST _ Bears general manager Jerry Angelo denied a report in a Chicago newspaper saying he supported signing Kordell Stewart in free agency while the staff of former Bears coach Dick Jauron wanted Super Bowl quarterback Jake Delhomme.<p>

The report, quoting unnamed coaches called Angelo a "meddler" and said he actually told the team at a meeting when coming to Chicago that he intended to fire Jauron.

"It was absolutely no truth to any of what I heard," said Angelo from Florida, where he was scouting a college all-star game.. "There was absolutely no credence."

A Bears team source called the entire article "factually incorrect," and lacking in "reality." That source said Angelo had actually sought coaches' opinions on which veteran free agent quarterback to sign because he wanted to draft a quarterback, as well. The source said Jauron and other staff members at that time disliked the idea of signing Delhomme due to his inexperience as a New Orleans backup, and felt they needed someone with more experience to go with the draft pick, who eventually turned out to be Rex Grossman.

Jauron was asked at Wednesday's press conference in Detroit whether he felt being the Lions defensive coordinator allowed him more breathing room than being head Bears coach.

"I have not really thought about that from that angle," Jauron said. "It certainly will be a lot different in that regard.

"I didn't welcome my exit there (in Chicago). I wish that it hadn't ended that way it ended, but it did. I certainly welcomed this opportunity. I don't see it as a breather. I see it as a great challenge, a huge challenge in front of us and hopefully something that I can contribute to."

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