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Chicago Bears extend assistant general manager Ian Cunningham | Reports

On Tuesday, the Chicago Bears brass talked through why they were so confident ahead of the 2024 NFL Draft. One of the reasons general manager Ryan Poles touched on was his right-hand man.

Assistant general manager Ian Cunningham got a shout out from Poles.

"I am blessed out of my socks to have him by my side through this process," Poles said. "Especially when you reflect back to the first two years getting this thing off the ground."

A day later, Cunningham was rewarded for that dependability.

According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Cunningham was given a contract extension Wednesday.

Cunningham was one of the top general manager candidates this past offseason, but removed himself from discussions to stay with the Bears. The Los Angeles Chargers were one of the teams who sought Cunningham as their GM.

Now, Cunningham's contract will reflect his status as one of the key parts of the Bears' rebuild.

Without Cunningham, it's difficult for Poles to imagine the Bears' rebuilding. He spoke about what Cunningham meant to him Tuesday beyond the personnel decisions.

Poles talked about Cunningham being a force that kept him on course during some difficult moments.

"To have a guy like him that, not a 'yes man' that keeps me in line when I start getting off track, to keep our staff together when I get pulled in different directions," Poles said. "We wouldn't be where we are today if it wasn't for Ian as well, being there and being an unbelievable partner."