As Bears flounder, general manager Ryan Pace isn’t saying anything

If the Good Ship Bears is sinking, the man who built the hull, loaded the cannons and hoisted the mainsail ought to stand on the pier and tell us what the hell is going on.

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General manager Ryan Pace should be answering questions about what’s ailing the Bears, but he has been conspicuously quiet.

General manager Ryan Pace should be answering questions about what’s ailing the Bears, but he has been conspicuously quiet.

Tim Boyle/AP

That silence you hear coming from Halas Hall is Bears general manager Ryan Pace.

Pace, who is in his sixth season on the job, is as quiet as a mouse in a Kleenex box.

How come?

These are troubled times for the Bears, who have lost six consecutive games, including a baffling 34-30 loss Sunday to the woeful Lions at Soldier Field. There were big hopes for this team, building on the recent semi-success of the 2018 season.

That Bears team went 12-4 before losing in the NFC wild-card round to the Eagles 16-15. You’ll recall kicker Cody Parkey at the end, so no need to bring that up.

But this was supposed to be the rebound after a blah 8-8 season and no playoffs in 2019. Yet what we see with a 5-7 team is closer to the end than the beginning, a failure that whispers grimly for the dreaded ‘‘rebuild.’’

The times cry out for a big statement from the man who orchestrated this mess afield, from the man who hired coach Matt Nagy, traded for high-priced defender Khalil Mack, picked quarterback Mitch Trubisky in the 2017 draft and brought in Nick Foles as a hopeful but failed offensive savior.

If the Good Ship Bears is sinking, the man who built the hull, loaded the cannons and hoisted the mainsail ought to stand on the pier and tell us what the hell is going on.

Mr. Pace, sir?

Nothing.

Meanwhile, Nagy and Trubisky are left to twist in the wind, facing the media, trying to answer the unanswerable.

Trubisky said he’s in ‘‘shock’’ over the 30-20 fourth-quarter lead the Bears blew to the Lions. Stupidity and lack of effort (maybe lack of talent?) abounded down the stretch.

The obvious failure was Trubisky’s fumble at the Bears’ 7-yard line with less than two minutes left.

But why had the Bears’ defense just let Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford complete six consecutive passes out of the no-huddle to race 96 yards and cut the lead to 30-27?

Why did return man Darnell Mooney slide down on purpose at the Bears’ 11 after returning the ensuing kickoff only five yards?

Why did receiver Allen Robinson step out of bounds before getting a first down on the Bears’ ill-fated final drive?

Why did the offensive line and running back David Montgomery fail to get one freaking yard on fourth-and-1?

Why did the Bears’ brain trust call that ridiculous dropback pass for Trubisky, anyway?

You look for a simple answer to all the questions, and there isn’t one. Not for the coach or players, anyway, many of whom know their careers in Chicago are walking the plank over the deep blue sea.

The answer has to come from on high.

Owner Virginia McCaskey isn’t going to say anything. Chairman George McCaskey is mum. President and CEO Ted Phillips might be in the vault, polishing Red Grange icons.

Ryan Pace, where are you? Hello? Step up, sir.

Maybe saying right now that Nagy’s job is secure wouldn’t mean much. We know how votes of confidence from GMs can turn into thumbs-down gestures overnight.

But it would mean something just to say something — anything — about this unfolding shipwreck. It would mean something to Bears fans everywhere, who range in spirit from depressed to outraged to even-COVID-is-better-than-this.

‘‘The only thing we can do is keep giving everything we’ve got,’’ Nagy said at his news conference Monday.

The team, he said, needed to ‘‘keep plugging away.’’

Yeah, well. Whatever.

And his communication with Pace?

‘‘There’s more real conversations, real talk,’’ Nagy insisted, between the two during troubled times than during good times. Yet he said he hadn’t talked with Pace about job security.

Interesting.

Which brings up another question: Would firing Nagy really matter? Would it change anything for a franchise that hasn’t won a championship in 35 years?

There’s something fundamentally out of whack with the Bears. There has been for years. Good luck putting your finger directly on it. And if you say, ‘‘Fire the McCaskeys,’’ that ain’t happening, pardner.

But Pace, who does a little radio communication before games on WBBM-AM and nothing else, he’s the man who watches it all and should have answers. Or, at least, responses.

The Lions fired their coach and GM the week before they beat the Bears. A blueprint? From the Lions, who haven’t won a playoff game since January 1992?

No matter what, the Bears have to do something.

Mr. Pace — captain, sir — what might that be?

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