It’s no secret that NFL head coaches like to keep things secret, but John Fox has taken things to another level this summer at Chicago Bears camp.
The team has issued some crazy rules for reporters trying to give their loyal readers and fans a picture of what the team will look like heading into the 2015 season. Dan Berstein, a radio host in Chicago, outlined the silliness on CBS Chicago:
“Credentialed reporters, however, have now been told not to report. They can’t tell anyone what they see on the field, nor can they approach players or coaches at the conclusion of practice without having submitted a request for approval 24 hours prior.”
Clearly, Fox doesn’t want folks to know what’s happening during practices. However, as Bernstein notes, this might not end the way the head coach envisions it should:
“These laughable guidelines were put in place ostensibly to control information, despite the fact that it clearly does the exact opposite. Instead of allowing those trained and paid to process and disseminate news, the Bears have now ceded that control to anybody with a smartphone.”
Essentially, anyone who isn’t credentialed can take on the role of a reporter, taking videos from the stands and live-tweeting what’s happening during practice.
News is going to get out, regardless of Fox’s ridiculous mandate.
Fox would be wise to forget about trying to control the media and just focus on turning the dilapidated Chicago brand into something worth paying attention to again. The Bears finished in last place in the NFC North last season with a dismal 5-11 record. Offensively and defensively, this team needs a complete overhaul.
In no way, shape or form will blocking the media from doing its job help Fox turn the ship around in Chicago. It will be interesting to see if this mandate holds up throughout training camp, however, and to see what kind of amateur reporting emerges in the meantime.
Photo Credit: UPI/Gary C. Caskey