The Bears Trubisky workout was considered little more than a mere myth during most of the predraft process. Nobody knew if the team had bothered to have any sort of private meeting with the young QB. They’d met with Patrick Mahomes and DeShone Kizer and were in full attendance for the Deshaun Watson pro day. It seemed like the comments by GM Ryan Pace were ringing true. He had no interest in college quarterbacks with limited experience.
It was something he harped on for weeks. Even going so far as to invoke the name of Drew Brees, a man who spent three years turning Purdue into a winning program. The argument had plenty of merit. That’s why it made for such a complete and convincing deception. As it turns out Pace and his staff were in on Trubisky much earlier than people realized.
Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune wrote an excellent in-depth article covering exactly how the Bears came to their final conclusion to draft him. While that in itself is a tremendous story, fans may love hearing just how far the GM was willing to go to keep it a secret.
Bears Trubisky workout cover-up involved another NFL team
Things started with fairly standard procedure. Rather than do the drills at the North Carolina football facilities, the Bears moved to an intramural field near the baseball stadium. The attention down there was minimal. However, it got dangerous for Pace during one surprising moment as the practice was in progress.
“So as Trubisky fired comeback darts to Tar Heels receiver Ryan Switzer and deep crosses to Bug Howard and up-the-seam touch passes to former tight end Jack Tabb, a women’s lacrosse practice was underway on the adjacent field.
On one of their most important mornings of the pre-draft process, the Bears were hiding in plain sight.
At one point, Pace approached the father of one of the lacrosse players who seemed to be sizing up the workout.
“Are you guys with the Dallas Cowboys?” the man asked.
Indeed, Pace told him.
And what about that silver-haired coach across the way? “Is that Paul Pasqualoni?”
No doubt, Pace agreed.
“I didn’t lie to the dude,” the Bears GM says. “I just went with what he thought.”
Well that is surprising, and also hilarious, and also brilliant. It’s another welcoming sign that Ryan Pace is a man who can think on his feet. He has an answer for any situation. He could’ve easily gotten flustered and told the father to leave. They were trying to have some privacy. Instead he just casually confirms a fictitious story the man had made up in his own head without missing a beat.
That’s good stuff. Thus his job is done without the need for raising any alarms. It’s also a window into how far the Bears would go to keep their secret. Not only did they move the workout to a nondescript field. They even masqueraded as representatives of an entirely different football team.
Can’t say it didn’t work. The Trubisky pick was easily the shocker of the draft. Now comes the fun part: making it a success.