When any team falls well short of expectations, changes are deemed inevitable. The Chicago Bears, two full days after their playoff elimination at the hands of the New Orleans Saints, are no exception.
Kevin Fishbain of “The Athletic” has reported that Bears Defensive Coordinator Chuck Pagano is set to retire from the NFL, effective immediately.
Bears defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano is retiring, according to sources. Story https://t.co/RH5Y2yegKs— Kevin Fishbain (@kfishbain) January 13, 2021
The Bears’ defense certainly did not perform to their usual standard this season. After starting off red-hot at 5-1, and near the top of the league in every statistical category, a major decline was observed. Where they finished near league average in 2020, this defense is being paid elite money as a whole.
How steep was the decline? In 2018, the Chicago Bears’ defense ranked #1 in Vic Fangio’s last season as DC in almost any metric and stat you can think of. In 2020, two years after Chuck Pagano took over, the defense finished 12th in points, 17th in sacks, and 25th in takeaways. This is with largely the same corps of players from 2018 through 2020.
Still, Chuck has always been a respectable person, and an inspiration for many. His battle with cancer is one not one person will ever forget, and overall, he’s enjoyed a coaching career that lasted since 1984. His stops in the NFL included with the Cleveland Browns; (then) Oakland Raiders; Baltimore Ravens; Indianapolis Colts; and the Chicago Bears.
Now, the Bears’ search for a new DC begins. Best wishes, Chuck, and enjoy that well earned retirement.
We’ll keep you all updated as more information roles in...