Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

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Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Mon May 20, 2019 10:34 am

HOF writers choose the Bears top 100 players of their 100 year history. 100-76 are published so far.

https://www.chicagobears.com/photos/top ... ime-100-76" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
  • 100: LS Patrick Mannelly
  • 99: S Doug Plank
  • 98: DE Trace Armstrong
  • 97: P Bobby Joe Green
  • 96: S Eddie Jackson
  • 95: LB Larry Morris
  • 94: WR/Coach Jim Dooley
  • 93: OT Herman lee
  • 92: FB Bill Osmanski
  • 91: OT Bob Wetoska
  • 90: HB Beattie Feathers
  • 89: C Mike Pyle
  • 88: QB/K Joey Sternaman
  • 87: DE Luke Johnsos
  • 86: CB Allan Ellis
  • 85: QB Jay Cutler
  • 84: OG Tom Thayer
  • 83: WR Willie Gault
  • 82: QB George Blanda
  • 81: WR Brandon Marshall
  • 80: WR Alshon Jeffery
  • 79: WR Dennis McKinnon
  • 78: CB Donnell Woolford
  • 77: DB Bennie McRae
  • 76: DB J.C. Caroline
  • 75: DE Akiem Hicks
  • 74: OG Kyle Long
  • 73: DT Tommie Harris
  • 72: S Mark Carrier
  • 71: K Kevin Butler
  • 70: FB Matt Suhey
  • 69: QB Bill Wade
  • 68: OG Dick Barwegen
  • 67: DE Ed O'Bradovich
  • 66: DE Mike Hartenstine
  • 65: WR Dick Gordon
  • 64: OT James "Big Cat" Williams
  • 63: S Mike Brown
  • 62: K Robbie Gould
  • 61: HB Willie Galimore
  • 60: LB Khalil Mack
  • 59: DE Julius Peppers
  • 58: DT Wally Chambers
  • 57: DT Jim Osborne
  • 56: DB Roosevelt Taylor
  • 55: QB Johnny Lujack
  • 54: P/QB Ed Brown
  • 53: QB Jim McMahon
  • 52: OG Joe Kopcha
  • 51: OT Keith Van Horne
  • 50: OG Mark Bortz
  • 49: OG/DL Ray Bray
  • 48: DL Fred Williams
  • 47: S Dave Duerson
  • 46: LB Doug Buffone
  • 45: LB Otis Wilson
  • 44: HB/WR Johnny Morris
  • 43: LB Wilber Marshall
  • 42: S Richie Petitbon
  • 41: HB Neal Anderson
  • 40: END Ken Kavanaugh
  • 39: END Harlon Hill
  • 38: OT/DL Link Lyman
  • 37: END George Halas
  • 36: HB/DB Red Grange
  • 35: OG George Musso
  • 34: RB Matt Forte
  • 33: C George Trafton
  • 32: HB Paddy Driscoll
  • 31: CB Charles "Peanut" Tillman
  • 30: S Gary Fencik
  • 29: FB Rick Casares
  • 28: LB Lance Briggs
  • 27: C Olin Kreutz
  • 26: OT Ed Healey
  • 25: END Ed Sprinkle
  • 24: LB Joe Fortunato
  • 23: HB/DB George McAfee
  • 22: OT/LB George Connor
  • 21: OT Joe Stydahar
  • 20: KR/PR Devin Hester
  • 19: DT Steve McMichael
  • 18: C Jay Hilgenberg
  • 17: OT Stan Jones
  • 16: END Bill Hewitt
  • 15: LB Mike Singletary
  • 14: LB Brian Urlacher
  • 13: OT Jimbo Covert
  • 12: DE Richard Dent
  • 11: DE/DT Dan Hampton
  • 10: OG Danny Fortmann
  • 9: END Doug Atkins
  • 8: C/LB Bulldog Turner
  • 7: G/LB Bill George
  • 6: TE Mike Ditka
  • 5: HB Gale Sayers
  • 4: QB/P/DB Sid Luckman
  • 3: FB/OT Bronko Nagurski
  • 2: LB Dick Butkus
  • 1: RB Walter Payton
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Mon May 20, 2019 3:56 pm

Jim Dooley must've been an incredible WR to make this list, considering how his horrifyingly bad coaching had to weigh him way, WAY down.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Tue May 21, 2019 1:28 pm

Updated with 75-51
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Tue May 21, 2019 1:51 pm

it is Mike Hartenstine, not Mark

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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Wed May 22, 2019 9:42 am

Updated with 50-26.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Wed May 22, 2019 10:40 am

REally good names in that group. Will be interesting to see top 25.

Mack making the list was a little crazy to me. Give him some time with same production as last year and he will be in the top 15 easily.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Wed May 22, 2019 10:42 am

Papa Bear was such a stud he has to take up 2 positions
37: END George Halas
36: HB/DB George Halas
I think perhaps Pompei and Pierson compiled their list while at a bar :toast:
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Wed May 22, 2019 11:06 am

Boris13c wrote:Papa Bear was such a stud he has to take up 2 positions
37: END George Halas
36: HB/DB George Halas
I think perhaps Pompei and Pierson compiled their list while at a bar :toast:
Ha fixed, 35 is Red Grange.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Wed May 22, 2019 11:58 am

How much did Lance Briggs pay to get that high on the list? He's a quality player, but the 28th best player ever? Just going by stats on this one? Otis and Wilbur were better IMO. I would also have Tillman ranked ahead of him by talent.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 10:59 am

Finished out the top 25.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 12:07 pm

Da Coach was #6? I think he got screwed.

Put me down for Ditka in spots 1 through 200 on the Top 100 list.

DA BEARS!!!!

Urlacher and Forte should've been much higher and I wasn't even that big of a Forte fan, but he did have some awesome years.

Cutler at 85 and McMahon at 53? That should be reversed at a minimum and Cutler should be higher. OK fine, McMahon was the QB of the Super Bowl winning team but the defense won that one.

Gale Sayers was a great player but he didn't really play that long.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 12:17 pm

Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 1:11 pm

Atkins&Rebel wrote:How much did Lance Briggs pay to get that high on the list? He's a quality player, but the 28th best player ever? Just going by stats on this one? Otis and Wilbur were better IMO. I would also have Tillman ranked ahead of him by talent.
Excellent point.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 1:12 pm

wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
I think if you do lists like this for a franchise this old you have to go by eras. You can't tell me Sid Luckman would be a HoF QB running a modern offense, likewise I imagine some modern players would be confused as hell in playing in the 40's.

Hell, even some of the guys from the '85 team would have issues dominating the game today, namely because of how many rules are in place to protect the QB and neuter physical defenses.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 1:21 pm

Excellent point. Trying to do any sort of real comparison between players of different eras simply doesn't work for a number of reasons. So the list can make for a lively discussion but does not really have a basis of merit regarding who ranks where unless it is segmented by eras as you suggest.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 1:30 pm

These type of lists are all about getting discussion going. I really don't like them as for reasons mentioned prior (different eras, rules, ways to play the game).

McMichael #19? WTF? Not seeing him anywhere close to top 50.

Harlan Hill at #39. I would rank him up higher no doubt.

Urlacher top 10 would be a no brainer, possibly even top 5.

But what the hell.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 3:01 pm

wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
Uhhh...Jay Cutler holds most of the Bears passing records, and somehow he's #85. Jay should easily be in the top 25.

(There I did it. I've successfully converted this to a Jay Cutler thread).

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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Thu May 23, 2019 8:39 pm

Were Dennis McKinnon or Willie Gault better than Marty Booker? I sure don't think so.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 10:48 am

UOK wrote:
wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
I think if you do lists like this for a franchise this old you have to go by eras. You can't tell me Sid Luckman would be a HoF QB running a modern offense, likewise I imagine some modern players would be confused as hell in playing in the 40's.

Hell, even some of the guys from the '85 team would have issues dominating the game today, namely because of how many rules are in place to protect the QB and neuter physical defenses.
But you also have the argument that these guys would have access to modern training and "supplements" and could have been much better than they were. You can only look at how guys dominated the talent around them and use that as the basic metric.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 11:49 am

Atkins&Rebel wrote:
UOK wrote:
wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
I think if you do lists like this for a franchise this old you have to go by eras. You can't tell me Sid Luckman would be a HoF QB running a modern offense, likewise I imagine some modern players would be confused as hell in playing in the 40's.

Hell, even some of the guys from the '85 team would have issues dominating the game today, namely because of how many rules are in place to protect the QB and neuter physical defenses.
But you also have the argument that these guys would have access to modern training and "supplements" and could have been much better than they were. You can only look at how guys dominated the talent around them and use that as the basic metric.
There's merit to this argument I think. Butkus would've been a maniac today like he was in the '60s. But at the same time, kids are bigger these days (for debatable reasons good and bad, I suppose). Linemen back in the 1930's were like 230-240 sometimes. Maybe less. They wouldn't have a prayer playing today.
Mikefive's theory: The only time you KNOW that a sports team player, coach or management member is being 100% honest is when they're NOT reciting "the company line".

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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 12:18 pm

Not only is it subjective due to eras, also its due to the list compilers personal feelings about different people. Obviously Cutler would be lower simply due to his personality, rather than just stats. You also get a ' feel ' for players you watched and grew to like for whatever reason. I thought it was fitting that Forte was 34 simply because 34 is the ultimate RB number :)
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 12:25 pm

Mikefive wrote:
Atkins&Rebel wrote:
UOK wrote:
wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
I think if you do lists like this for a franchise this old you have to go by eras. You can't tell me Sid Luckman would be a HoF QB running a modern offense, likewise I imagine some modern players would be confused as hell in playing in the 40's.

Hell, even some of the guys from the '85 team would have issues dominating the game today, namely because of how many rules are in place to protect the QB and neuter physical defenses.
But you also have the argument that these guys would have access to modern training and "supplements" and could have been much better than they were. You can only look at how guys dominated the talent around them and use that as the basic metric.
There's merit to this argument I think. Butkus would've been a maniac today like he was in the '60s. But at the same time, kids are bigger these days (for debatable reasons good and bad, I suppose). Linemen back in the 1930's were like 230-240 sometimes. Maybe less. They wouldn't have a prayer playing today.
230-240 could easily get up into the 290's, and could be over 300 with today's diet and strength program. Cowboys LT Eric Williams went from 300+ down to 220ish after he quit playing. A lot of these guys have to work to stay big enough to play line. I've read that most eat around 5000 calories a day and some have to pack in up around 10,000 a day during camp and heavy training.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 1:25 pm

Urlacher is a top 10 player at his position of all time. Where would you even rank some of these guys above him?

The Ditka positioning is fan service at best.

Also, Sid Luckman's stats are trash so if you're calling him one of the greatest of all time cUz HiS wInS aNd rInGs then I guess you're also an Eli Manning proponent and that means I never want to hear you talk about football again.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 1:41 pm

Atkins&Rebel wrote:
Mikefive wrote:
Atkins&Rebel wrote:
UOK wrote:
wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
I think if you do lists like this for a franchise this old you have to go by eras. You can't tell me Sid Luckman would be a HoF QB running a modern offense, likewise I imagine some modern players would be confused as hell in playing in the 40's.

Hell, even some of the guys from the '85 team would have issues dominating the game today, namely because of how many rules are in place to protect the QB and neuter physical defenses.
But you also have the argument that these guys would have access to modern training and "supplements" and could have been much better than they were. You can only look at how guys dominated the talent around them and use that as the basic metric.
There's merit to this argument I think. Butkus would've been a maniac today like he was in the '60s. But at the same time, kids are bigger these days (for debatable reasons good and bad, I suppose). Linemen back in the 1930's were like 230-240 sometimes. Maybe less. They wouldn't have a prayer playing today.
230-240 could easily get up into the 290's, and could be over 300 with today's diet and strength program. Cowboys LT Eric Williams went from 300+ down to 220ish after he quit playing. A lot of these guys have to work to stay big enough to play line. I've read that most eat around 5000 calories a day and some have to pack in up around 10,000 a day during camp and heavy training.
Point well taken. But it's hard to assume that kinda thing. Would a star back then that played at 230 be able to carry the weight and move with 70 more pounds added? Maybe. Maybe not. But I understand your point and there's a lot of reasonableness to it.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 1:50 pm

crueltyabc wrote:Urlacher is a top 10 player at his position of all time. Where would you even rank some of these guys above him?

The Ditka positioning is fan service at best.

Also, Sid Luckman's stats are trash so if you're calling him one of the greatest of all time cUz HiS wInS aNd rInGs then I guess you're also an Eli Manning proponent and that means I never want to hear you talk about football again.
Ditka was a bada$$ on the field. Kinda the Gronk of his time.

But Luckman--along with throwing the ball all over the place--was also kind of a bada$$. QBs in the 1950s were nothing like today's with all the flag for touching the QB rules. There was a different skill set required. In order to put up the numbers he did, you had to be able to survive, because you got more abuse. That's why you couldn't be a skinny QB back then and last 2 games. The required physical body makeup didn't lend itself to being a meticulous thrower and the game didn't generally require that. Plus, you were throwing to guys who were getting mugged all over their routes. Just a different game then.
Mikefive's theory: The only time you KNOW that a sports team player, coach or management member is being 100% honest is when they're NOT reciting "the company line".

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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 2:29 pm

Mikefive wrote:
Atkins&Rebel wrote:
Mikefive wrote:
Atkins&Rebel wrote:
UOK wrote:
wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
I think if you do lists like this for a franchise this old you have to go by eras. You can't tell me Sid Luckman would be a HoF QB running a modern offense, likewise I imagine some modern players would be confused as hell in playing in the 40's.

Hell, even some of the guys from the '85 team would have issues dominating the game today, namely because of how many rules are in place to protect the QB and neuter physical defenses.
But you also have the argument that these guys would have access to modern training and "supplements" and could have been much better than they were. You can only look at how guys dominated the talent around them and use that as the basic metric.
There's merit to this argument I think. Butkus would've been a maniac today like he was in the '60s. But at the same time, kids are bigger these days (for debatable reasons good and bad, I suppose). Linemen back in the 1930's were like 230-240 sometimes. Maybe less. They wouldn't have a prayer playing today.
230-240 could easily get up into the 290's, and could be over 300 with today's diet and strength program. Cowboys LT Eric Williams went from 300+ down to 220ish after he quit playing. A lot of these guys have to work to stay big enough to play line. I've read that most eat around 5000 calories a day and some have to pack in up around 10,000 a day during camp and heavy training.
Point well taken. But it's hard to assume that kinda thing. Would a star back then that played at 230 be able to carry the weight and move with 70 more pounds added? Maybe. Maybe not. But I understand your point and there's a lot of reasonableness to it.
There are so many angles this discussion could go. For me it is how the violence in the game has evolved. I can also see the point of how these lists should be separated by era somehow.

Players like Deacon Jones, Butkus and Wilber Marshall dominated in their day but they probably couldn't go consecutive plays in today's NFL without getting a 15 yard personnel foul for looking at the QB the wrong way. What would Lawrence Taylor be like in today's NFL? Or how good would Khalil Mack be if he played 50 years ago when you actually hit people?

Players like Rodgers and Brady probably wouldn't have had the long careers they did today back then because people like Deacon Jones and Dick Butkus were allowed to knock them into next week repeatedly.

Another one is Devin Hester. With the new rules in today's league we don't get a guy like that in the NFL anymore. But then how fun was he to watch every week all those years ago?

Does Randy Moss, and several other WRs, have the careers they have if the safeties were allowed to headhunt? No.

It's one of those things that will forever be subjective.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 6:10 pm

Mikefive wrote:
Atkins&Rebel wrote:
UOK wrote:
wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
I think if you do lists like this for a franchise this old you have to go by eras. You can't tell me Sid Luckman would be a HoF QB running a modern offense, likewise I imagine some modern players would be confused as hell in playing in the 40's.

Hell, even some of the guys from the '85 team would have issues dominating the game today, namely because of how many rules are in place to protect the QB and neuter physical defenses.
But you also have the argument that these guys would have access to modern training and "supplements" and could have been much better than they were. You can only look at how guys dominated the talent around them and use that as the basic metric.
There's merit to this argument I think. Butkus would've been a maniac today like he was in the '60s. But at the same time, kids are bigger these days (for debatable reasons good and bad, I suppose). Linemen back in the 1930's were like 230-240 sometimes. Maybe less. They wouldn't have a prayer playing today.
You always have to compare historical players within the context of the era they played in. You can't say, well this player WAS good, but today he would suck. It's not any different than saying, well the Aston Martin DB5 was a good car, but today a VW GTI would run laps around it, so that diminishes how good it was. Doesn't matter. It was a tremendous car for it's time. Same thing with players.
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Fri May 24, 2019 9:04 pm

Bears Whiskey Nut wrote:
Mikefive wrote:
Atkins&Rebel wrote:
UOK wrote:
wab wrote:Lists like this a pretty subjective, but I don't see how Urlacher wasn't in the top 10.
I think if you do lists like this for a franchise this old you have to go by eras. You can't tell me Sid Luckman would be a HoF QB running a modern offense, likewise I imagine some modern players would be confused as hell in playing in the 40's.

Hell, even some of the guys from the '85 team would have issues dominating the game today, namely because of how many rules are in place to protect the QB and neuter physical defenses.
But you also have the argument that these guys would have access to modern training and "supplements" and could have been much better than they were. You can only look at how guys dominated the talent around them and use that as the basic metric.
There's merit to this argument I think. Butkus would've been a maniac today like he was in the '60s. But at the same time, kids are bigger these days (for debatable reasons good and bad, I suppose). Linemen back in the 1930's were like 230-240 sometimes. Maybe less. They wouldn't have a prayer playing today.
You always have to compare historical players within the context of the era they played in. You can't say, well this player WAS good, but today he would suck. It's not any different than saying, well the Aston Martin DB5 was a good car, but today a VW GTI would run laps around it, so that diminishes how good it was. Doesn't matter. It was a tremendous car for it's time. Same thing with players.
good analogy
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Sat May 25, 2019 2:13 am

There’s a fascinating book that’s called “Midway Monsters” I believe. Primarily about Nagurski, the biography also recounts the years playing with/for Halas, Red Grange, Beattie Feathers, and many of the names on this list, including Luckman. Well worth reading, especially to get some ideas of how uninvolved the passing game was then. One of the most clutch plays of the era was a partial primitive flea flicker, only where the running back throws the ball forward in the act of carrying.

Almost more like a basketball play we see to TEs in the endzone today, Nagurski would clean up catching touchdowns like this as nearly every play beforehand was a minor variation of running it straight up their ass. Defenses were caught with their pants down time and time again, and the Bears offensive innovations at the time raked championships up, even if they were elementary to Xs & Os fans today, were revelations in the 40’s.
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Richie
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Re: Pompei & Pierson's "Top 100 Bears in Franchise History"

Sun May 26, 2019 7:58 am

Urlacher and Singletary lower than I thought. Especially Singletary.

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