Mike Ditka returns to the Chicago Bears practice field this week suggesting that the mending of fences is underway, a fence that was broken 20 years ago when Ditka was fired from the Bears. Ditka stood on the sidelines Tuesday watching the team he once coached go through the practice drills and then he addressed the players once they were done, according to CBS News Chicago on Aug. 20.
Ditka's return comes after a friendship that the current and new coach of the Bears sought out when first landing the position as coach last January. Marc Trestman contacted Ditka and they ended up having dinner together with their wives.
Trestman's friendship with Ditka may or may not have been the precursor to the Chicago Bears repairing their relationship with the coach they fired in 1993. The olive branch was extended to Ditka from the Bears after Trestman's friendship with Ditka started. The Bears attempts at mending the fences with Ditka includes plans to retire his number 89 jersey before the game against the Cowboys, which is scheduled for Dec. 9.
The coach who brought the Bears to the win in Super Bowl XX left the Bears players today with a memorable impression after they got to experience a big piece of the Bear's history in the flesh! Ditka had words of inspiration for the team players. Trestman said:
“His message was a great one,” head coach Marc Trestman said. “It’s about the relationships that you have with your teammates, it’s about the camaraderie, it’s about the locker room. The money is the least significant portion of it. I think that’s pretty universal in the game of football when you’ve been around it a long time.”
Trestman said that he called Ditka last week and invited him out to see the new facility. He also hoped that if Ditka did come out that he'd spend some time with the players. The iconic coach accepted the invitation and agreed to address the players. Trestman and the players appreciated the visit. The team was excited to meet a man who plays such a big part in the history of the game, especially for their team. The new head coach extended an open invitation to Ditka to come by anytime.