Roquan Smith may want to read up on Wilber Marshall. There is no defense In NFL history that is better known then the 85 Bears. Packed with personalities and play makers and one of them who fit perfectly was second year linebacker Wilber Marshall. If you’re not a die hard Bears fan you may not know Marshall’s story. Roquan you may want to read this.
Even though the 84 Bears lost to the 49ers in the NFC championship that year it was clear they were going to be a force in 85. It was no secret that defense was going to be great and was packed with stars. Dent, Singletary, Hampton, Al Harris. Yes you heard correct Al Harris. Who’s Al Harris? Exactly.
Who is Al Harris?
Die hard Bears fans know exactly who he is. In case you don’t know who he is you can thank Wilber Marshall for that. Al Harris was a first round draft pick of the Bears in 79. Harris was never overly impressive and in 84 had just two sacks and one interception. I wouldn’t call him a star but Buddy Ryan did. This led to Harris feeling unappreciated and holding out. He was offered 275,000 to play that season but he wanted what the Bears were paying Marshall, 482,000 ( wow have times changed).
The Marshall comes calling
I’m sure at the time it felt different, but what the hell was Harris thinking? Not only was he surrounded by Hall of famers, but the Bears had this kid Marshall they drafted the year before in the first round they couldn’t wait to play. The Bears and Harris never came to an agreement that season. Marshall took over and was great just missing the pro-bowl, with Four interceptions, six sacks and one of the most iconic plays in Bears history. The fumble recovery for a touchdown in the NFC championship game. Marshall would make the pro-bowl the next two seasons before leaving for money reasons. Harris would sign the next season only to get hurt with a hamstring injury, but it didn’t matter the damage had been done. Harris wasn’t the only hold out that year. Safety Todd Bell did the same and lost his job to Dave Duerson.
Will History repeat itself?
Saturday Bears rookie linebacker Jack Sanborn had a big day with an interception a fumble recovery and seven tackles. So with Roquan Smith holding out and asking for a trade could this be Wilber Marshall all over again? No, Very very unlikely. Marshall was a first round stud the Bears knew would be great and Sanborn is an undrafted free agent. 85 Bears were the greatest team all-time and the 2022 Bears…… well you get point. Sanborn’s game Saturday should as atleast make Roquan think however. No one is bigger than the team, and you can always be replaced.
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