As Matt Eberflus continues to round out his staff, the newest name reportedly set to join this group of coaches is one with more playing experience than he does as a coach.
But, hey, you’ve gotta start somewhere.
The MMQB’s Albert Breer has the deets:
The Bears have hired Cardinals assistant Jim Dray as their new tight ends coach, per sources. Dray played the position for eight years in the NFL.
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) February 6, 2022
Chicago’s football team is set to add Jim Dray as the team’s new tight ends coach. It is an intriguing hire, no doubt. Dray has never been a coach at the NFL level. So, this will be Dray’s first gig as a position coach. No pressure, new guy. However, he has experience as an offensive quality control coach for the last two seasons with Arizona. Admittedly, that is a bit concerning. But what Dray lacks in coach experience, perhaps he will be able to make up by drawing from his playing career. Dray made 94 appearances (38 starts) from 2010-17 with the Cardinals (2010-13, 2017), Browns (2014-15), Bills (2016), and 49ers (2016).
But maybe more important than that is Dray getting a pretty rad co-sign:
I'll take his word for it.. https://t.co/BGPq3kDwEg
— Zack Pearson (@Zack_Pearson) February 6, 2022
Zach Ertz, a three-time Pro Bowl tight end, sings Dray’s praises in a reply tweet to Breer’s report about the former Cardinals coach latching on with the Bears. Kudos to Bear Report’s Zack Pearson for taking the words off my fingertips, as I’ll take Ertz’s word regarding a coach who has little NFL track record to speak of when it comes to coaching. And if Ertz wants to follow Dray to Chicago, let’s just say I wouldn’t be against it.
Ertz caught 74 passes for 763 yards, and five touchdowns. He did a bulk of that work with the Cardinals, snagging 56 passes, gaining 574 receiving yards, and scoring three touchdowns in 11 games. The Bears already have Cole Kmet on the roster for next season. But if the team had a desire to add veteran leadership that also happens to be a pass-catching threat at the position, then it could do worse than targeting Ertz in free agency. We’ve got some time before we cross that bridge, but it never hurts to look early.
In the end, it will soon be Dray’s day in Chicago. And hopefully, the beginning of a quality coaching career with the humble beginnings as the Bears TEs coach.