Pompei: Khalil Mack is an National Football League unicorn


"It was really geared around Jon Gruden", McDonough continued.

Gruden, who came out of the broadcasting booth to return the Raiders to Super Bowl glory, discussed what this does to the team's chances of competing, and it doesn't sound like he wanted to trade Mack.

The Oakland Raiders were never sold on the idea of moving superstar Khalil Mack.

At first, offensive tackle Charles Leno didn't believe the news when he was told Saturday morning that his Bears had just landed star pass rusher Khalil Mack.

"That's what makes it hard, because we all knew, me, Gabe, Khalil, Jelly, we all saw it coming", Carr said. "Bottom line is, we did do our due diligence, there was a standoff and he got a great contract from the Bears". Obviously Mack is a better linebacker than Dalton and Flacco are quarterbacks - the 27-year-old is arguably the second best defensive player behind Aaron Donald - but like those two mediocre signal-callers, he is not capable of carrying a unit to competence without a lot of help, like true franchise quarterbacks are. He could've been a Gruden Grinder.

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The Browns were often mentioned as a candidate to land Mack, but he wound up in Chicago with the Bears. He was originally selected by Oakland with the fifth pick in the 2014 draft.

"They're trying to divide us", Gruden said via ESPN's Paul Gutierrez. "I did have contact with him [Saturday], too, exchanging our best wishes to him and thanking him for being a great Oakland Raider".

"What we're hoping with James is that we as coaches can get him to the point where he can just continue to grow every day in his technique". Pace has been building a young roster the last three years, and the Bears appeared to be moving closer toward contention.

Having said that, topping the NFC North division alone is going to be a tough challenge for Chicago, as they are not the only team that made a significant upgrade this offseason. Each of those four young DBs has shown plenty of potential, but how they'll perform in the bright lights of Week 1's Sunday Night Football content remains a question-especially for the two rookies playing their first games as pros. "Our feeling was he was not going to report anytime soon".