There is a disturbing trend developing at Halas Hall, and it has nothing to do with who is being hired. Indeed, it’s about who isn’t.
The Bears’ search for a new running backs coach continues:
Duce Staley is joining the #Lions’ coaching staff as assistant head coach/running backs, per source.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) January 25, 2021
NFL Network insider Tom Pelissero reports the Lions are hiring Duce Staley, giving him the Running Backs Coach/Assistant Head Coach titles. The Bears were reportedly targeting Staley for a job on Matt Nagy’s staff. But instead of landing in Chicago, Staley takes his coaching talents to Detroit. In other words, the Bears have lost out on a coaching candidate to the Lions for the second time in as many weeks. That’s gross.
To be clear, this isn’t me saying that losing out on an assistant coach is the be-all, end-all. It’s just that Staley becomes the second assistant outside of Halas Hall to give the Bears the “thanks, but no thanks” treatment. And to coach the Lions, no less. Imagine how Staley and Aaron Glenn must feel about the long-term situation in Chicago if they’re choosing to coach for a guy who wants to eat his opponents’ knee caps.
Tack on DL Coach Jay Rodgers jumping ship to the Chargers, the Falcons’ poaching of Pass Game Coordinator Dave Ragone and RBs Coach Charles London, plus OLBs Coach Ted Monachino’s departure, and that’s enough turnover to sound some alarms.
At a minimum, it says a lot about the outside perception of what’s happening with the Bears. And that’s not good, to say the least.
Late last week, we discussed how the Bears are seeing the dangers of standing pat. Moreover, we highlighted the risks of bringing back a lame-duck GM. Being unable to lure quality assistants is a problem. But what if that’s just the tip of the iceberg? If this current regime can’t hire high-end help from the outside, how can we expect their big swing at quarterback to go well this offseason? And even if that swing connects, how can a GM with no job security function within a long-term window that isn’t a priority when fixing the immediate needs for the sake of his own job takes precedent.
All in all, this Bears thing is a mess. Again, this isn’t about not landing Duce Staley or Aaron Glenn as assistants. But it’s apparent that what was once an attractive place is no longer that based on recent events. Maybe internal promotions can get things back on track. But it’s an awful risk. One that, if it doesn’t work out, will cause problems for whoever gets to clean up the mess.