For Chicago Bears fans, 2022 looks to be a rebuilding season.
The team has ditched head coach Matt Nagy in favor of Matt Eberflus.
Former Colts’ defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus is being hired as the head coach of the Chicago Bears, per sources.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 27, 2022
They have also traded away one of the best defensive weapons in Khalil Mack.
To think that the Chicago Bears would release Tarik Cohen and Eddie Goldman on the same day…and that neither release is registering as even a mildly big deal…is kind of crazy. There was so much promise in the Pace era at one point.
— DaBearsBlog (@dabearsblog) March 12, 2022
Both players were a factor in the Bears’ 2018 playoff berth.
With Eberflus having fewer weapons than Nagy had in his first year with the Bears, how is he going down the Nagy path in 2022?
Justin Fields Is Eberflus’ Mitch Trubisky
Eberflus will have second-year quarterback Justin Fields to work with for 2022.
That mirrors what Nagy had to work with when he had second-year quarterback Mitch Trubisky in 2018.
The Bears brought Nagy to the team to work with Trubisky to help the young quarterback grow.
While Eberflus’s experience is on the defensive side of the ball, he can still give Fields some advice.
The hope for the Bears and their fans is that Eberflus doesn’t fail as Nagy did with Trubisky.
The future for Fields, Eberflus and the Bears all hangs on how everyone hands the coaching change.
How Eberflus Has Taken A Detour On The Nagy Path
Nagy’s time in Chicago might be seen as an overall failure for him.
But there are reasons behind his failure that some have yet to look into.
When Nagy came to Chicago, he was without the familiar faces he came to know during his time with the Kansas City Chiefs.
He would get the Bears to hire Mark Helfrich to be his helper as the offensive coordinator.
The pair had never worked together before, meaning there would be no chemistry between the two.
Eberflus has taken a detour in the Nagy path by getting coaches he worked with during his time with the Indianapolis Colts.
Indianapolis Colts GM Chris Ballard confirms on @mullyhaugh that several coaches from the Colts are joining the Chicago Bears coaching staff.
Ballard said Bill Polian talked to him and Frank Reich during the Bears head coaching search.
— Daniel Greenberg (@ChiSportUpdates) January 31, 2022
That luxury that Eberflus has wasn’t available to Nagy.
The Chiefs would prevent him from taking any of the staff members he worked with.
The Colts haven’t done that with the Eberflus situation.
Since the Eberflus hire, he has acquired four Colts defensive coaches to help him in Chicago.
That will help the first-year head coach implement his plans for the Bears in 2022.
Will Eberflus’s Old Co-Workers From The Colts Help The Bears Defense?
While Eberflus has a plan to be enacted for the Bears’ defense, the question will be if he can get it done.
The Bears are already without Mack and Goldman, two pieces from the Bears’ stellar 2018 season.
The team has also let Akiem Hicks test out the free agency market.
With these defensive stars no longer with the team, Eberflus and his crew will have fewer pieces to work with.
The team still has Roquan Smith, the best linebacker on the team.
The plan might be for the team to work around him for the 2022 season.
It will come down to who the Bears can get for Eberflus in the free agency market and the NFL Draft.
If the team can land some good players to help the defense and protect Fields, the detour that Eberflus is taking in the Nagy path might become permanent in a good way.