CEO Kevin Warren addresses future of the Bears, new stadium
Kamil Krzaczynski - USA Today Sports

CEO Kevin Warren addresses future of the Bears, new stadium

by - Correspondent -

CHICAGO - President and CEO Kevin Warren just finished his first season with the Chicago Bears. This season did not live up to expectations as the Bears failed to make the playoffs for the third season in a row. However, that does not deter him from having lofty goals and expectations for the franchise going into next year and beyond.

“I also want us to be the best business organization not only in the National Football League, but in all of sports,” Warren said. “I want people to talk about what we’re doing here in Chicago, to come here to learn. That takes time, that takes people and (then) make sure that we build it the right way.”

Head coach Matt Eberflus has already been determined to be one of the people to be involved in Chicago’s future. There is much debate about whether quarterback Justin Fields is part of that future, something Bears fans will find out at some point during the offseason.

But, Warren did state that he believes Chicago already has the right set of people, maybe being an indication that leadership is leaning toward retaining Fields for at least one more season.

“Unequivocally, I believe that we have the right set of individuals. Expectations going into this season are extremely high. They’re always the same, that we need to win the NFC North,” Warren said. “That’s where we should be and we’re going to do everything we possibly can to make sure that’s not a word of hope but it is also reality and it starts with making sure you have the right culture, but it also starts with making sure you get really good players here and I think everyone would attest to the fact that the acquisitions that we made last year in the draft and free agency is really positive.”

Part of the debate regarding Fields is because the Bears are sitting with the No. 1 overall pick once again. They could use this pick to draft a new quarterback, but most often rookie quarterbacks do not win their division and make it to the playoffs, which is the annual goal of the Bears to do that at a minimum, as Warren discussed.

One lingering issue Warren has been dealing with throughout his tenure with Chicago thus far is where the Bears’ new stadium will be. It was set to be in Arlington Heights, but that came to a pause due to the taxes.

While it still seems most likely the Bears will build their new stadium on that property, Warren is most concerned about balancing the price of the stadium with the quality.

“From a stadium standpoint, I am focused on making sure that we build the most progressive, smartly-priced, on-time, under-budget stadium development project that’s ever been built in the National Football League and that’s what we’re focused on every single day,” Warren said.

Wherever the Bears end up playing in their future, Warren stated that from the time construction starts on the new stadium, it should take 36 months for the stadium to be completed. That would be ideal for Chicago and for fans so they can start to familiarize themselves with their new stadium. But since the location has not been 100 percent confirmed, that new stadium will not be coming for a number of years.

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