By Brian Vickers, CCNews Media
February 4, 2018, Super Bowl Sunday, I, watched Super Bowl XLI (52) while in attendance of an event hosted by former Chicago Bear Linebacker-Otis Wilson, and the Otis Wilson foundation. Wilson was promoting his new book ‘If These Walls Could Talk.’ He candidly spoke about the 1985 Chicago Bears. Wilson said, “When Buddy Ryan (Defensive Coordinator) left, the defense left.” He spoke about how he felt Vince Tobin’s Defensive scheme was not as aggressive as Buddy Ryan’s infamous “46 Defense.” Wilson believes if Ryan would have remained in Chicago as Defensive Coordinator, the Bears would have won 3 Super Bowls; 2 consecutive and eventually a 3rd Super Bowl. When asked about his relationship with his Head Coach (1982-1992) Mike Ditka, Wilson said “Ditka wasn’t the leader a Head Coach should have been.” In Wilson’s view, “Ditka didn’t communicate with his players the way a Head Coach should have. Furthermore, Ditka was all about himself, selfish.”
Wilson remembered a former teammate on the Offensive side of the ball with a great deal of affection and respect, former Quarterback Jim McMahon. Wilson recalls during the third game of the 1985-86 season, the Bears were in Minneapolis taking on the Minnesota Vikings. The Bears were trailing 9-17 at Halftime. Wilson will admit, more than 30 years later, “the first half of this game was not one of our best first half.” McMahon did not start the game because of a neck injury but McMahon kept begging Ditka to put him in the ballgame.
At the start of the second half, Ditka inserted McMahon. The play Ditka sent in was supposed to screen pass to Walter Payton however, McMahon changed the play. The result was a 70-yard Touchdown pass to Wide Receiver Willie Gault. After the play was over, Ditka was enraged and got in McMahon’s face, and asked him “what was that?” McMahon said, “the screen pass.” Then Ditka said, “why did you throw it to Willie?” And McMahon replied, “because he was open.” Wilson also recalled how McMahon would change plays all the time and this was a practice that would frustrate Head Coach Mike Ditka. Wilson said “well, when you have someone who don’t know what they doing, and someone who knows what they doing, that can happen.”
Former Chicago Bear Linebackers-Jim Morrissey and Otis Wilson, members of the 1985 Bears, were also in attendance. Morrissey played for the Bears from 1985-1993; during his time with Bears he possessed a good work ethic and credits Ditka for motivating him to work hard. Every year Morrissey came to training camp, he always worked hard like rookie trying to make the team.
Former All-Pro Offensive-Linemen-James ‘Big Cat’ Williams was also in attendance. Williams played for the Bears from 1991-2002. Williams remembers former Head Coach (1999-2003) Dick Juaron as “a father figure.” Williams mentioned the Bears team went 13-3 in 2001; and during that season, Williams talked about weeks 6-7, how Free Safety capped off those wins with interceptions he returned for Touchdowns. The Bears captured their first Division title in 11 years, but they were knocked out the Playoffs by the Philadelphia Eagles, in the first round. That would be the only Playoff appearance Williams made during his career. Although Williams didn’t make a Super Bowl appearance, he considers himself Blessed to have played for the Chicago Bears, and in the NFL for 12 years. During half-time of the Super Bowl, Wilson raffled off prizes to some of the other guest. One the items that was raffled off was an authentic Otis Wilson Jersey #55, which was autographed by Otis Wilson. The event was a great success, and a wonderful time was had by all.