New Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman held his introductory press conference this morning. It was a lengthy discussion that outlined Trestman's vision for the franchise going forward.
Yet before he spoke, GM Phil Emery discussed the many reasons he felt Trestman was the right man for the job:
"I had to ask myself, and the vision of why Marc Trestman over these other candidates. As the day went on a little longer, and I said 'Hey, in my gut, why is it Marc Trestman for you? What connection, where is that connection and why Marc over these other candidates for myself? Through all these discussions, what qualities made that connection?'
"No. 1, the skills as a professional and the mental toughness that it takes to go into a place that you've never been before where they don't know you or anything about you, where they speak a foreign language, it's a town unfamiliar to you, in a game that's different than the one you've been coaching. Now you have 12 men instead of 11 to coordinate. To go in that and take on the task of being a head football coach, and do it with a staff that you hired - there was no staff in that building when Marc came there, he interviewed and hired all of those individuals on his own - and to have great success and to win championships, that tells me a lot about that candidate. That's a candidate I want to be in the room with. I want to be working towards championships with that individual.
"The perseverance of character. Marc has grown, like we do, in his life. He's had personal ups and downs, but at the end, where is he? He's a champion, and now he's the head football coach of the Chicago Bears. It was a road wildly traveled for Marc, not unfamiliar to me. I've been in all corners of this country. I didn't have the fortune that Marc did to experience a new country, but I know what it's like to take small steps toward achieving a goal. There was a connection there.
"The ability to adapt to players; we had great discussions about the draft and the draft process. The first thing that Marc asked me, the first question that Marc asked me was 'For you, when you're drafting players, is it the best player or the best system-fit player?' I said 'Absolutely it's the best player; you want the best player that can transcend schemes, that has a skill set that will work out and will be able to progress as a player regardless of the scheme.' He said, 'Good, if I'm the head football coach, let's do that, because I can take those players and we'll take their skill sets and we can adapt to what they do best so that we can win.' That's a very attractive quality, and he's demonstrated it.
"One of the best stories I had from Jim Popp, his general manager in Montreal, was people don't realize how good Marc is at this. Last year they lost their top running back, they lost their top receivers. It came down to the best players on their squad were tight ends, so what did Marc do: He adapted to his circumstances, he put three tight ends in the game and he moved the ball and won games. Not only can he adapt to the personnel, but he can adapt to the situation very easily. He's been in a number of NFL cities, and he's gone up to Canada, and he's always demonstrated excellence. That's a person I want to be in a room with; I want to be on his side.
"It's been 31 years, since I've been in college, that I've had the good fortune of being in this game as a coach or administrator. Marc has a quietness to him; a quiet confidence, high level of intellect, those are attractive qualities. The thing that was most remarkable that came out of his interviews and when discussing to people who Marc is, was there is a heck of a football coach under all that quietness and confidence and intellect.
"Do not underestimate Marc Trestman as a competitor. He's as tough-minded and football-oriented than anybody I've been around in 31 years in this game. It'll be evident when you see this team play, with the tempo this team will play, and with the competitiveness that they play. That's the kind of guy that I want to be in the room with.
"Besides our birthdays falling one day short of each other, which is also a connection, I have to admit to it, when I looked up and saw his birthday was at 1/15 and my was 1/16, and we were in discussions to hire Marc, I was kind of going back and forth with Cliff Stein and Ted Phillips on 'who's birthday is this going to fall on.' It ended up falling on mine, so I got the present, and Marc got the job, so it all worked out well.
"Those were the keys in my mind of why Marc Trestman, why he is now the head football coach of the Chicago Bears.
"I'm going to share one other thing to you that kept repeating itself to me. Marc shared to me his favorite quote, and he caught me during our one-on-one sessions, and he might have said it eight times, to the point where he was sure I had got it. Marc has a law degree, I'm a physical education major, it takes a couple of reps for me. But Marc said to me, 'What I do for myself, is buried with me. What I do for others lives forever.' That said a lot to me about his approach to life and who he is as a person and his personal growth, his journey, his story. He also told me that he got that quote from Criminal Minds. So there was another connection, because my wife and I, we love Law and Order and Criminal Minds, so I knew we had a match made in heaven.
"On behalf of the McCaskey family, the Chicago Bears and this great city and our great fans, I'd like to introduce to you Marc Trestman, head football coach of the Chicago Bears. (applause)"
Jeremy Stoltz is Publisher of BearReport.com and a member of the Pro Football Writers of America. Follow Bear Report on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Bear Report Web site or magazine, click here.