by Matt Bowen
January 12, 02010
Who’s going to run the offense next season in Chicago, and, more importantly, who’s going to work with Jay Cutler, turn this team around and show us why the quarterback was worth the mega-deal that sent him to the Bears last off-season?
Lots to talk about when it comes to the Bears, Lovie Smith, GM Jerry Angelo and down the line.
But besides the fact that Chicago has to find a new coordinator who will work with Cutler, tailor the offense to the quarterback’s abilities and find a common ground when we talk about game plans, schemes, the type of throws Jay likes to make, etc., there still has to be a name.
Talking to people within the league and sources close to the Bears, the overwhelming assessment is that coaching in Chicago right now is a desperation job.
As in, it might be a one-year rental — complete with a short-term lease.
Let’s remove Cutler from the equation for a moment, because for all the talk about why this coach or that coach would be good for the quarterback — and that’s important — there is still the belief that 2010 will be Lovie’s last as head coach.
And that’s why we see some of the bigger names, people who would be perfect for Cutler and the Bears, moving on to other cities. Think of Charlie Weis going to Kansas City with Todd Haley, or Jeremy Bates (who seemed like the perfect fit just last week) leaving USC and heading north to Seattle with new coach Pete Carroll.
Those are jobs that come with security, and they’re jobs that could provide springboards to the head coaching ranks for Weis and Bates. Their new head coaches aren’t going anywhere soon.
But in Chicago, if you take the job as offensive coordinator, come next January, you could be back on the street — once again looking for work. That’s just the reality of the situation in Chicago.
We’ve heard Mike Martz’s name thrown around for some time now. He has gone on the record as saying he’d be interested in the job. I played for Mike is St. Louis. He is, without a doubt, a brilliant mind when it comes to offensive football at the NFL level, and from my perspective, I think he would be great for Cutler in his development to the elite class of NFL quarterbacks. He coaches hard and he demands a lot from his players — especially the quarterback.
Right now, Martz is on the street, looking for work. So why haven’t the Bears brought him up to Chicago for a formal interview? There’s no red tape to go through, no permission needed from another team. No, he’s a free agent in the coaching ranks, free to sign with any team. But the Bears haven’t shown that much interest in the former Rams head coach. A fallback plan? Yes, that could happen.
But where do the Bears go from here? As the NFP’s Brad Biggs reported Monday night, Chicago was denied permission to speak with Packers quarterbacks coach Tom Clements about the job.
Hate to say it, but who’s left?
I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Bears go after a young, eager coach in the near future. Someone who’s looking for that opportunity and who’s willing to take a chance that they could be out of work within a year.
It’s a tough situation — one that has the Bears and their fans looking for an answer. And a quarterback who needs a coach.
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