The Chicago Bears are coming off a 12-4, NFC North-winning season, their first under head coach Matt Nagy.
The expectations are high for Bears fans heading into 2019, but one man with ties to the club threw some cold water on those hopes.
John Fox: Bears had worst offseason
Appearing on ESPN’s “NFL Live” on Monday, former Bears head coach John Fox was asked which of the league’s teams had the worst offseason, and Fox said Chicago.
“I think when you’re going to play defense, you’re going to lean on takeaways to help a young offense, and you don’t have a kicker, a reliable kicker, that you’re going to need those points from after some of those turnovers,” Fox said, via the Chicago Sun-Times. “I think the kicking question is really big right now in Chicago. And I think that might be a problem for them in the season.”
Fox was the Bears coach when they cut kicker Robbie Gould on the eve of the 2016 season; Chicago has been searching in vain for a kicker ever since.
Chicago fired Fox after the 2017 season, his third with the team; the team was 14-34 under Fox, finishing last in the NFC North each year.
‘Losing Vic Fangio...is huge’
One of Fox’s ESPN co-workers agreed with his assessment. Damien Woody also said the Bears had the worst offseason among NFL teams, but cited a different reason.
“Losing [defensive coordinator] Vic Fangio…I think is huge,” Woody said. “That Chicago Bears defense, it literally fueled their offense. It’s the identity of the Bears. And when you lose a talented defensive coordinator like that, I think there’s going to be some slippage there.”
The 60-year-old Fangio is now with the Denver Broncos, getting the first chance in his long career to be an NFL head coach.
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