Bears special teams coordinator Dave Toub to be free agent

Much of the focus on the Chicago Bears over the past six weeks has centered on the future of offensive coordinator Mike Martz, the rogue play caller who is coming out of contract.

But the Bears face the prospect of losing two coordinators as Dave Toub, who directs the special teams unit, is also set to become a coaching free agent after the season ends Sunday at Minnesota.

Toub has been the special teams coordinator under Lovie Smith since 2004 and the Bears have consistently been among the top-ranked units in the NFL. In composite rankings, they are currently third and poised for their fourth top-six finish in the league six seasons.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter mentioned Toub as a darkhorse candidate to become the head coach in Jacksonville, and his goal is to one day become a head coach. Now, Toub could leave for another special teams job following a 15-day period in which the Bears have exclusive negotiating rights with him.

It is very important to be back here," Toub said. "But now is not the time to talk about it.”

Toub’s units have scored 23 touchdowns and blocked 22 kicks since 2004, both totals that lead the NFL.

“He is the best at what he does," long snapper Pat Mannelly said. "Obviously, we have some pretty special players in certain positions but those guys wouldn't be able to do what they do without some of the ideas he comes up with.”

The Bears may need to come up with a lucrative offer to keep Toub.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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