By Dan Bernstein--
CBSChicago.com senior columnist
(CBS) It's Halloween, and the Cubs' season is still going. Consider that for a moment before we confront tonight's national fright-fest, otherwise known as the 1-6 Chicago Bears on display on Monday Night Football.
It's the evening we stand by the door with a bowl of candy, pushing the good stuff -- the fun-size Snickers and Milky Ways and Reese's that we'll destroy so definitely and shamelessly if there are any left over, hoping they're all gone to leave us with the lesser temptation of Sweet Tarts. Toddlers are adorable superheroes, grade-schoolers vampires and teenagers mostly surly and undisguised harvesters of free sugar.
If you aren't a neighborhood homeowner, you're probably at a party with men dressed like women and women dressed like everything from sexy zombies to slutty zombies. Somewhere there will be a TV on, with the Bears on it.
And with the distraction afforded by the Cubs dissipated for a night, the doorbell stops ringing at just about the time of the opening touchback. Not to mention Bulls/Nets will be at halftime, if that was going to be your thing. We're going to watch this, probably, or at least look at it, which are entirely different experiences.
We have been so absorbed in the Cubs that the ironic detachment of considering the Bears might be oddly pleasurable, especially if the people next door made their annual batch of special cider. Having at least one more World Series game still protects us from having to confront the cold reality of our looming sports winter, the one that involves a football franchise in the process of descending into chaos. Aroldis Chapman bought us at least two more days.
That cover ends Wednesday at the latest in either a party for the ages or a few days of grumbling. Then it's time to really look at what this is on the field and, more importantly, in the nervous offices at Halas Hall.
The Bears have hired outside consultants to evaluate the entire football operation from the top down, the NFL Network reported Sunday. It's the Bearsiest thing possible, considering they employed outside help already to hire Ryan Pace as general manager not even two years ago and once used an executive search firm to find an eventual GM who was an executive for a team in their own division.
The Chicago Tribune wrote Monday that there "was no indication Sunday that the Bears front office or coaching staff were aware of a consultant's involvement in any evaluation." Understandable, because there's little indication that either is aware of much of anything.
John Fox is being looked at as the primary problem, sources tell 670 The Score, already wearing out his welcome after a hastily arranged marriage upon his abrupt departure from Denver. There are some in Lake Forest who now better understand why John Elway had enough of the demanding and difficult coach, with one source likening the atmosphere to "Thibodeau and the Bulls." The difference was that Thibodeau won for the most part, while Fox's ability as a repairman has failed him this time around.
Here the Bears are again to be showcased, however, reminding us not only how spectacularly they have continued to collapse despite a recent and full reconstruction, but just how lucky we have been to have the Cubs to keep us from thinking about it.
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