New Chicago Bears coach Marc Trestman showed a sense of humor at his introductory press conference on Thursday.
Trestman, a longtime NFL assistant, spent the past five years building a successful head coaching career with the Canadian Football League's Montreal Alouettes.
Now he is back in the NFL, where the rules are a bit different.
"I'm excited to have four downs, not three," Trestman said.
Trestman won two Grey Cups in Montreal.
Before that, Trestman worked with some of the top quarterbacks in the NFL as an offensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers, Oakland Raiders, Cleveland Browns and Arizona Cardinals. He also had a stint at North Carolina State.
Now he will work with Jay Cutler, a talented but inconsistent signal caller.
"The No. 1 marriage in all of sports is between the quarterback and his coach," Trestman said. "The quarterback is going to have the keys to the car ... Jay is not a first-year player coming in."
Trestman, 57, was famously fired as the 49ers' offensive coordinator after the 1996 season. At a press conference in which the 49ers announced head coach George Seifert's resignation and the hiring of Steve Mariucci as Seifert's replacement, a reporter asked about the fate of Trestman. Team owner Eddie DeBartolo grabbed the microphone and declared, "He's gone."
But Trestman has strengthened his resume in recent years with Montreal in becoming a candidate for a head coaching job in the NFL.
Trestman began assembling his coaching staff Wednesday. He hired New Orleans Saints interim head coach Aaron Kromer as offensive coordinator and offensive line coach, according to ESPN. And the Bears replaced departed assistant Dave Toub with Dallas Cowboys special-teams coach Joe DeCamillis, who also will be named assistant head coach.
Trestman's Montreal teams went 59-31 in the regular season, 5-3 in the postseason.