Sounding off

How is it possible that the BEARS could risk loosing a talented but sparingly used wide receiver to a division rival when the team had the right to receive an early third round (Vikings) pick which is exactly what it cost the Bears to acquire him through the draft. Someone has to be held accountable for this!

If the BEARS could have gotten an early 3rd round pick for D'Wayne Bates it would not be a player of the same caliber. However, it would still be a wise decision to let the Vikings claim him because the BEARS could use the extra quality pick to attempt to replace Walt Harris (1st Round) and Tony Parrish (2nd Round). The club seems to have a ton of confidence in Jerry Azumah, which confuses me. Azumah (5th round) is consistently beaten badly and couldn't keep Mike Green (Mr. Irrelevant) from emerging as the nickel back. Mel Kiper thought enough of Green to predict he would have been taken in the 4th round, so I know he is a talented player. It's just why give a guy a long-term deal if he can't hold off a DB that should have been about one round ahead of him. That is a sign Jerry Azumah has not developed enough to even be considered a successful pick for M. Hatley. Although at least the BEARS are willing to put the athlete on the field unlike their other experiment Dustin Lyman. Has Reggie Austin done anything to show he even deserves to be in the league? The bottom line is the BEARS need another quality DB.

Now the BEARS must resign Bates because the idea of him abusing Azumah almost makes me as sick as I was when I realized Jim Miller would not be given the QB job unless both Cade McNown and Shane Matthews got hurt after the four brilliant games Miller lead the offense in '99 (I witnessed at San Diego). I was at the Rose Bowl of '96 when Bates put up similar stats to K. Johnson even though he was faced with a USC secondary that featured Dexter McCutcheon, Brian Kelly, and Sammy Knight.

Yes Bates emerged against two beaten up secondaries in Detroit and Jacksonville, but Miller always wanted him as his 3rd receiver in practice. The guy was picked ahead of Marty Booker who is a very good receiver. I know Bates could be just as effective as Booker and there is no way that David Terrell or Dez White should be listed higher on the depth chart until they actually would be more effective than Bates would be as the 3rd receiver.

What if Marcus Robinson was only emerging as a star because of Gary Crowton's pass happy offense? What if he is too expensive for the production he will get in a ball control offense that features Anthony Thomas? I think Robinson, Bates, and Terrell are basically the same player. Bates is a steal at the deal the offer the Vikings gave him. Basically one million a year for three years for a player that just dominated that USC secondary. Jerry Angelo should trade White before they even consider parting ways with Bates.

I remember when the Bear Report printed an article from a fan after D. Bates was drafted. The fan said he had a dream that D. Bates was going to be a great player. Well I had a dream that a WR would dominate for the BEARS after being picked 9th overall in a trade with Jacksonville and also getting an additional 25th overall pick for the rights to the fifth overall pick (the rights to draft C. Enis). However, it turned into a nightmare Randy Moss abused the BEARS DB's. Mr. Angelo please don't turn that fan's dream into a nightmare when Bates lines up opposite of Azumah.

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