At his post-season press conference, general manager Phil Emery made a couple things clear regarding the Chicago Bears defense in 2014:
1- He wants to get younger. We know that Julius Peppers and his enormous salary are likely not going to be a part of the Bears future, and Charles Tillman may be finding work elsewhere once free agency starts. Emery will draft heavily, if not exclusively, on defense this April.
2- He wants to fit the scheme around his playmakers, and not the other way around. Emery like versatile, athletic players that can 'transcend scheme' (his words), and indicated that there will be some flexibility in Chicago next season.
With that said, the message boards have lit up with rumors that the Bears may be looking to change from a traditional 4-3 defense to a 3-4, with unsurprisingly strong opinions on both sides of the fence. Many folks understand that there will be flexibility, and potentially a hybrid-type defense, but others have been really trying to define the base defense in more specific terms.
Today, the team's official website cleared things up:
In terms of the scheme, the Bears will remain a 4-3 base team. But having coaches with experience in a variety of different systems will give them the versatility to take advantage of what their players do best.
"It's a matter of being able to utilize the people that we have and be ready to do whatever it's going to take with a system that's flexible enough to do it," Trestman said. "It's making sure we have a scheme that can utilize our players and bring the best out of them."
Trestman also provided some thought and detail regarding keeping Mel Tucker as his defensive coordinator, as well as why they made some changes in the assistant ranks. Make sure to check out the full article for more detail.
For those of you who have been looking for something definitive, are you happy to see the 4-3 will return?