As you all know by now, Julius Peppers is a Bear, along with Chester Taylor and Brandon Manumaleuna. The reactions to these events should range from the Redskin-fan like euphoria, where every fan feels like their team just won the offseason superbowl, to the bitter, jaded response that those moves didn't really address the biggest deficiencies on the team and that they're doomed anyways. Or, if you're completely retarded, you can argue that this team will never win anything because Jay Cutler blahblahblah.
The fact is, these were good moves. Do they smack of desperation? Of course they do. They should. The fact that Lovie and Jerry feel the heat is a good sign. It shakes up the view of complacency that so many of us were afraid of. In an uncapped year there's absolutely no reason for them Not to break the bank on the free agent market, and Peppers was unquestionably the best free agent out there. Peppers also, far more than Rod Marinelli's sage wisdom, has the chance of improving Tommie Harris, and, by extension, the entire Bears defense. They don't need to revert to 2006 form to be competitive, they simply need to be a top 16ish defense, keep the offense in the game, and avoid debacles like the games against the Bengals, Cardinals, or the game in Minnesota.
Taylor was a good move as well, assuming the team uses him in tandem with Forte and doesn't just give up on Matt. The offensive line was the problem with the run game this year, and it would be foolish to judge Forte based on his performance behind that line. It was thinking like that led to the team drafting Cedric Benson when Thomas Jones was already on the roster. The two quality backs are a must, however, as was obvious this season when Kevin Jones went down and Garrett Wolfe only managed to solidify his status as a wasted draft pick.
Manumeleuna was a good move as well, in the sense that he's a good blocker and he fits Martz' system. The rumors are that Greg Olsen wants out and the Patriots are offering a 2nd round pick for him. I don't like that Olsen has to leave just because he doesn't fit a system I don't like in the first place, but if they trade him for a second round pick that can be used on on a quality guard or tackle that can make an impact this year, well, that wouldn't be the worst thing that could happen.
These were good moves. If Jerry can turn Olsen into a 2nd round pick and have a quality draft, and they maybe find a serviceable veteran lineman or safety after cuts in the spring and summer, they might be able to patch together an offensive line or secondary that can get them through the year and get this team back into the playoffs.