Four downs with Mike Ditka

Written By BY MIKE DITKA Posted: 02/23/2014, 02:43am
Array NFL comissioner Roger Goodell holds the Vince Lombardi Trophy at a news conference Friday, Jan. 31, 2014, in New York. The Seattle Seahawks are scheduled to play the Denver Broncos in the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game on Sunday, Feb. 2, at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

1. Coach Marc Trestman said the Bears will stick with a 4-3 defensive scheme, but he admitted they must be flexible based on the personnel they acquire in the offseason. Do you think this is the right approach?

I do. I think it’s a good thing what Marc is doing. If you have some good down linemen, then play the 4-3. If you don’t, then switch it up and go 3-4. There is really not much difference between the two. In either one, you have to make tackles.

2. The Bears said they are moving Shea McClellin to linebacker, where he likely will battle Jon Bostic for a position. Do you see this as a last chance for McClellin?

They want to see what they can get out of him. Obviously, they didn’t like what they saw of him last season, so they’re going to try something. You have to put your best 11 players on the field. And if he’s one of the best 11, then he’ll play regardless of position. But if he’s not, then you have to move on as a team.

3. When you were involved in the draft, how much credence did you put into the NFL Scouting Combine when determining a player’s ability?

What it really comes down to is, do you trust the combine or do you trust your scouts? I always trusted my scouts. If a guy can play, he can play regardless what he weighs or lifts or runs. I mean, really, what’s the difference between a 4.3 and a 4.4 in the 40? You have to be smart about this. So what if he has a great combine? What if he doesn’t have the mental ability or the character to play? Those are much more important.

4. Were you shocked to find out NFL commissioner Roger Goodell makes more than $44 million? President Obama makes $400,000.

Well, Goodell is doing a better job. He deserves it. No, I don’t have any problem with it. The owners pay him that. He’s the CEO of the NFL, and they feel he’s done a pretty darn good job to earn it.

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