It had been awhile since wide receiver Brandon Marshall said something worthwhile about the Bears. But that changed this week.
In an interview with MMQB’s Albert Breer, Marshall said his work on Showtime’s “Inside the NFL,” which was came during the season, led to the Bears’ decision to trade him to the Jets after the 2014 season.
According to Marshall, current Bears general manager Ryan Pace and coach John Fox were opposed to it. He began working for Showtime under former GM Phil Emery and coach Marc Trestman.
“When I sat down with (GM) Ryan Pace and coach John Fox, we met, and I asked, ‘What do you guys think about this?’ It was a big topic,” Marshall said. “And Ryan Pace said, ‘Well, we can do that in the offseason.’ So I was like, ‘Well, what about half the season?’ ‘No.’ ‘What about once or twice?’ ‘No.’ ‘What about bye week?’ ‘No, you can do that in the offseason.’
“Right then, I knew I wouldn’t be a Bear anymore, because I think that the business of the NFL is growing every single day, and players are being told to stay in a box and just play football, and we’re missing out on a lot of opportunities, not only to grow as men and businessmen but to experience different things.”
It’s not surprising that the Bears’ new regime had an issue with Marshall’s TV work, which involved him flying to and from New York. Pace and Fox were in the early stages of overhauling their roster, and Marshall joined the Bears under Emery.
Marshall’s TV appearances, though, weren’t the only reason he was traded. The Bears had his run-in with one of Trestman’s assistants at practice and his falling out with quarterback Jay Cutler to consider, among other issues.
Marshall declined to talk about his relationship with Cutler in the MMQB story.
In March 2015, the Bears traded Marshall and a seventh-round pick to the Jets in exchange for fifth-round selection (safety Adrian Amos).
After a record-setting, three-year run with the Bears, Marshall had 109 catches for 1,502 yards and 14 touchdowns in his first season with the Jets. He also has continued to appear on Showtime.