Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Who Should Be The Chicago Bears Next Head Coach?

The Chicago Bears are in need of a head coach after firing John Fox this week. Although people may not love the John Fox era, it wasn't harmful to the organization as a whole, so I really can't complain with the outcome. The Bears were not going to be Super Bowl contenders during these last few years no matter who their coach was, and Fox was a professional football coach, which was totally fine.

But now it's time to get someone exciting. Most importantly, it's time for the Chicago Bears to put in a coaching staff with a strong offensive mindset that can help develop a quarterback as Mitch Trubisky showed plenty during his rookie year, but two things he was missing was any sort of offensive ingenuity and, oh yeah, talented receivers who could actually get open and catch footballs. The Bears have plenty of money and draft opportunities for the latter, so let's look at who can fill the void with the former.

Without further adieu, here are my top three coaching candidates, unless Sean McVay is available, in which case we should definitely get McVay.

Josh McDaniels
Josh McDaniels is a retread coach as his first head coaching sting did not go as planned in Denver. But I think it was more a case of too much, too soon as opposed to the guy having no potential as a head coach. He definitely should not have been in charge of personnel decisions without ever proving himself as a head coach; it was simply too much on his plate.

But really, if you take out the head coaching stint, isn't this a guy to be excited about? He's had super successful offenses and has found all sorts of different ways to be successful depending on the talent he had on hand. I understand that Belichick assistants do not have the best track record, but most of his assistants had shorter track records and/or had tons of talent to work with. Admittedly, McDaniels has Tom Brady, but the variety of players that have found success with the Patriots is impressive and shows that McDaniels can adjust to his talent.

But, he also had that Rams stint where they had the worst offense in the league, which makes me think he's not quite a miracle worker. He might be the new Belichick, but he might also be Charlie Weis; that's why he's only third on this list.

John DeFilippo
If you want to look at careers with challenges faced, it might be tough to compete with John DeFilippo and the various places that he has coached. He has been a quarterbacks coach for the Oakland Raiders under Lane Kiffin, New York Jets, San Jose State, Oakland Raiders again before becoming offensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns in 2015 where they went 3-13, and although that may not sound impressive, it is triple the amount of wins they have had the last two years.

But his most important stint is his last two years as QB coach for the Philadelphia Eagles where he has overseen the development of Carson Wentz. Wentz was far more raw than Trubisky coming out of college, and he may have won the MVP award this year had he not gotten hurt late in the year. Wentz also succeeded without a superstar receiver, as he spread the ball around and found different impact players every game. This is the type of thing the Bears will likely have to do next year, as even though the weapons will improve, the receiving corps will not be fully fortified in a year.

DeFilippo has faced a number of challenges, and although he only has one year as an NFL offensive coordinator, he is at least worth an interview for head coaching positions. It would be risky, but it also might be the right call.

Matt Nagy
Matt Nagy is the current offensive coordinator for the Kansas City Chiefs. He was formerly a quarterback at the University of Delaware. He also played professionally, although never at the NFL level, before getting into coaching as an assistant for the Philadelphia Eagles. He slowly worked his way up and followed Andy Reid from Philadelphia to Kansas City where he became quarterback coach before taking over as offensive coordinator in 2016.

Andy Reid is a head coach who likes to have a lot of say in his offense. He is known for still handling play calling which would seem to worry some about Nagy's actual input in the offense. But with the Chiefs struggling this season, Reid gave up play calling duties, and Nagy helped guide the team's offense to the success they sustained early on in the season.

Another huge positive for Nagy is that the Chiefs do not have a traditional number one wide receiver. This has given them a chance to show their creativity. They find different ways to use Travis Kelce, get the ball to Tyreek Hill in space, and provide enough misdirection to make Kareem Hunt look like one of the best running backs in the league despite not being a blue chip talent coming out of college. And he does all of this with a quarterback who has less than ideal physical traits.

The Bears have Adam Shaheen, who is not going to be Travis Kelce but can still provide matchup problems with his size. They also have Tarik Cohen who may not be as explosive as Hill, but he can definitely do some damage in space. And they also have Jordan Howard, who has already showed he can be a stud running back, and this is without much creativity in the Bears play calling. On top of that, the Bears have a quarterback with all of the necessary physical traits who could take Nagy's scheming to the next level.

But let's face it, the Bears are going to bypass all of these guys and go with Jeff Fisher, because sports are dumb, and the Bears will never be good.

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