I recently returned from a week-and-a-half-long roadtrip across the eastern half of the U.S. Spending 5 days traversing over 3,000 miles in a car gives a man a lot of time to ponder the important things in life…like the 2010 Chicago Bears coaching staff.
Here are my 5 very predictable outcomes from the coaching staff cleansing at Halas Hall.
1. Lovie will not be hired as coach of the Tennessee Volunteers. Sorry to disappoint all the Lovie haters. As much as I credit Mike Florio at profootballtalk.com for posing the idea, this is a long shot. Why would a premier program like UT settle for a socially-challenged, mediocre head coach whose recent 3-year record is 2 games below .500? Then again, this is the same school that hired Kiffin fresh off a 5-15 tenure with the Oakland Al Davises.
2. Mike Martz will be hired as OC. Lovie’s Buddy System will reward yet another former Ram coaching colleague. The selection won’t necessarily mean Martz was the first choice. It’ll have more to do with the fact a lot of candidates will be cautious about jumping onboard with a lame-duck coach who could be jettisoned at season’s end. And because Lovie’s livelihood in Chicago depends on this hire, I think he’ll likely go with a proven commodity over a younger up-and-comer, like Ken Zamphese of the Bengals.
3. Perry Fewell will be the defensive coordinator…of the Giants. I had this one pegged even before reports started surfacing Thursday that Fewell (not to be confused with Perry Farrell of ‘90s rock band Jane’s Addiction fame) was going to stay in the Northeast. And why not? The G-men will probably offer more greenbacks and he’ll have more stability than what Lovie can afford in Chi-town. That leaves [insert name of washed up, former Lovie coaching crony here] as a potential DC.
4. Mike Tice will join the Bears as O-line coach. Yes, the coach who was famously reprimanded for scalping his Super Bowl tickets – while head coach of the Vikings – will add to the dysfunction at Halas Hall. He was also with the Vikes when they couldn’t get their 1st round draft pick up to the podium in time and dropped back into the round. While blame was spread throughout the organization for that gaffe, former Vikes owner Red McCombs had his fall guy: “That was because Mike and the guys didn’t have their damn signals straight. That was like junior high school handling of a situation. We didn’t go up and get our draft pick in. That showed lack of organization.” Tice is currently on the Jacksonville staff, but with Jack Del Rio in a similar one-and-done situation as Lovie, I’m guessing Tice opts for a change of scenery to the familiar NFC North.
5. Lovie will be at the center of another coaching search this time next year. This time, it’ll be his own job he’s looking for.