Meet Vic Fangio and the Chicago Bears' Defensive Assistants

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Meet Vic Fangio and the Chicago Bears’ Defensive Assistants

Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears kick things off in 2018 with an appearance in the 2018 Pro Football Hall of Fame Game. Earlier in the offseason, we got to know Matt Nagy the head coach candidate – and eventually – the head coach. And after boning up on the players and their respective groups, we figured now would be a good time to get to know the coaches who will be working under Nagy and with different positions around the gridiron. 

Previous: Mark Helfrich and the offensive assistants.

Today: Defensive coaches

Defensive Coordinator

Vic Fangio

Fangio’s NFL Coaching Experience

  • 1986-1994 New Orleans Saints (Linebackers)
  • 1995-98 Carolina Panthers (Defensive Coordinator)
  • 1999-2001 Indianapolis Colts (Defensive Coordinator)
  • 2002-05 Houston Texans (Defensive Coordinator)
  • 2006-09 Baltimore Ravens (Linebackers)
  • 2011-14 San Francisco 49ers (Defensive Coordinator)
  • 2015-present Chicago Bears (Defensive Coordinator)

Notable Coaches Worked For…

  • 1986-1994 Jim Mora Sr.
  • 1995-98 Dom Capers
  • 1999-2001 Jim Mora Sr.
  • 2002-05 Dom Capers
  • 2006-07 Brian Billick
  • 2008-09 John Harbaugh
  • 2011-14 Jim Harbaugh
  • 2015-17 John Fox

Why He’s Here

The Bears went from a historically bad defense in 2014 to a top-10 squad in 2017 under Fangio’s watch. His 3-4 scheme already has pieces in place and could only get better with another year in his system and the players who were added via the 2018 NFL Draft.

Fangio is a player’s coach who can be brutally honest without upsetting the apple cart. He he has that “leader of men” quality every successful head coach possesses, an ability to assess what works and doesn’t in his unit, and get the most from what might otherwise be viewed as a short deck. Fangio isn’t a quarterback whisperer, but he knows good quarterbacking when he sees one. And more importantly, he knows how to stop it.

Fangio could have skipped town via free agency, but he re-signed with Chicago and his return was widely celebrated.

Meet The Assistants

Jay Rodgers, Defensive Line

  • Coaching Experience: Chicago Bears (2015-present), Denver Broncos (Coaches assistant 2009-10; Defensive quality control coach, 2011; Defensive line, 2012-14), Iowa State (Wide receivers, 2007-08), Stephen F. Austin (Quarterbacks, 2005-06), Missouri State (Quaterbacks, 2004), Dodge City Community College (Passing game coordinator/quarterbacks, 2003), LSU (Offensive assistant 2001, Defensive assistant 2002)
  • Fun Fact: Played quarterback at College at Indiana (1996-98) and Missouri State (1999).

Glenn Pires, Linebackers

  • Coaching Experience: Chicago Bears (2015-present), Atlanta Falcons (Linebackers, 2008-14), Miami Dolphins (Linebackers, 2003-07), Detroit Lions (Linebackers assistant, 2001-02), Arizona Cardinals (Linebackers assistant, 1996-2000), Michigan State (Assistant, 1995), Syracuse (Assistant 1983-84, 1989-1994), Dartmouth (Assistant, 1985-88).
  • Fun Fact: Curtis Lofton earned All-Rookie honors from Pro Football Weekly and the Sporting News for the Falcons in 2008. I suppose this experience could be helpful for Roquan Smith, whenever he shows up.

Brandon Staley, Outside Linebackers

  • Coaching Experience: Chicago Bears (2017-present), John Carroll University (Defensive coordinator/secondary 2013, 2015-16), James Madison University (Linebackers 2014), Tennessee (Graduate assistant 2012), Hutchinson (Kan.) Community College (Defensive coordinator 2010-11), St. Thomas University (Linebackers/special teams 2009), Northern Illinois (Secondary 2006-07; Special teams 2006-08; Linebackers 2008)
  • Fun Fact: Earned National Coordinator of the Year honors in 2016 for Division III John Carroll

Ed Donatell, Defensive Backs

  • Coaching Experience: Chicago Bears (2015-present), San Francisco 49ers (Defensive backs, 2011-14), Denver Broncos (Secondary, 1995-99, 2010), University of Washington (Graduate assistant, 1981-82; Defensive coordinator, 2008), New York Jets (Secondary, 1990-94; Special assistant, 2007), Atlanta Falcons (Defensive coordinator, 2004-06), Green Bay Packers (Defensive coordinator, 2000-03), Cal State Fullerton (Defensive backs (1989), Idaho (Defensive backs, 1986-88), Pacific (Defensive backs, 1983-85), Kent State (Graduate assistant, 1979-80)
  • Fun Fact: Won Super Bowl titles with the Broncos (1997-98) and was the defensive coordinator when the Packers racked up a franchise-best 52 sacks.

Roy Anderson, Assistant Defensive Backs

  • Coaching Experience: Chicago Bears (2017-present), San Francisco 49ers (Safeties, 2016), Indianapolis Colts (Safeties, 2012-15), Baltimore Ravens (Player personnel assistant, 2005-07; Defensive assistant, 2008-11), LSU (Graduate assistant, 2004), Florida State (Student Assistant, 2003), Florida A&M (Graduate assistant, 2002).
  • Fun Fact: Played quarterback at Howard University (1997-2001) and was on the All-MEAC Scholar Athlete team (2001).

Sean Desai, Defensive Quality Control

  • Coaching Experience: Chicago Bears (2013-present), Boston College (Running backs/special teams, 2012), University of Miami (Assistant director of football operations, 2011), Temple (Graduate assistant, 2005-09; Defense and special teams coach, 2006-10)
  • Fun Fact: Is an adjunct professor at Lake Forest Graduate School of Management. No, seriously.

Bill Shuey, Defensive Quality Control

  • Coaching Experience: Widener University (Defensive coordinator 2014-17), West Chester University (Linebackers, 2012-13), Philadelphia Eagles (Training camp coordinator 2001-03, Offensive assistant/quality control 2003-07; Defensive assistant/quality control 2007-08; Linebackers, 2008-11)
  • Fun Fact: Coached three All-American defenders at Widener University.


Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.