After nine years as the Chicago Bears head coach the soft spoken and level headed Lovie Smith is OUT. It wasn’t the best way to ring in the new year as Smith was fired by the Bears on Monday after a 10-6 season. Smith did quite a bit of good for the Bears in his time with Chicago, but his downfall was the part of the game in which he had no experience; the offense.
Chicago is now on the hunt for a new head coach and guess what they’re looking for…an offensive minded guru. Bears General Manager Phil Emery described his current head coach search as “fast, furious and thorough” on Thursday after conducting the initial round of interviews with prospective candidates. He held a press conference to discuss Lovie’s firing on Tuesday and was jet-setting to Atlanta for interviews almost immediately after.
Who are the Potential Candidates?
- Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Tom Clements (this interview cannot be conducted until after the playoffs)
- New Orleans Saints offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael Jr.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan
- Atlanta Falcons special teams coordinator Keith Armstrong
- Dallas Cowboys special teams coordinator Joe DeCamillis
- Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy
- Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians
It’s not required to have an offensive minded coach to be successful in the NFL. We’ve seen the defensive minded coaches get the job done as well, for instance Mike Tomlin, Bill Belichick and John Fox, even special teams guys like John Harbaugh. But if offense is the reason Lovie was booted, offense is what the Bears are looking for. Our defense is solid for at least another year with Lance Briggs, Julius Peppers, Charles Tillman and Tim Jennings all still under contract.
There are definitely other head coach openings around the league, but hopefully the Bears position is the most appealing to the potential candidates. Sometimes coming into an organization who believes they already have their “franchise quarterback” (Jay Cutler) and other star players in Brandon Marshall and Matt Forte takes some of the fun out of the job. Instead, we can only hope the large market, fantastic city and impenetrable fan base will lure the best of the best to lead the Bears.