Matt Nagy’s coaching staff is (officially) starting to take shape.
The Chicago Bears announced the hiring of three assistant coaches for Nagy’s staff on Friday, including two coordinators. Though, neither is the one you’ve probably been waiting impatiently to hear about.
Mark Helfrich is officially the team’s new offensive coordinator. You can read the Bears’ official release here and our initial look into Helfrich’s hiring here. Helfrich has been leading offenses and/or coaching quarterbacks since 1998, but his move to Chicago represents his first NFL experience. He amassed a 37-16 as Oregon’s head coach from 2013 to 2016 after Chip Kelly bolted for the NFL, but was 4-8 before being fired in his final season.
Helfrich, who was an analyst for Fox Sports in 2017, was believed to be a head coach candidate at Arizona and possibly in the running for a reunion with Kelly as UCLA’s offensive coordinator position.
The Bears filled another coordinator position when they announced the hiring of Chris Tabor to run the special teams unit. Tabor returns to Chicago after serving as the Cleveland Browns’ Special Teams Coordinator since 2011. Before coaching the likes of place kicker Phil Dawson and return ace Joshua Cribbs to Pro Bowl appearances and watching punter Britton Colquitt set franchise records in net punting average, Tabor was an asssistant under Dave Toub from 2008 until 2010.
As former Bears long snapper Patrick Mannelly points out: Tabor coached through five general managers and four head coaches during his time with the Browns. I suppose Tabor’s units were doing something right for him to remain employed.
You can read our initial thoughts on the Tabor signing here.
Charles London is officially in the fold as the team’s running backs coach. London’s NFL coaching career began with a three-year stint in Chicago under Lovie Smith, which started in 2007. London served as an offensive quality control coach. He has spent the last six years coaching running backs under Bill O’Brien, first at Penn State (2012-13) and then with the Houston Texans (2014-17). London inherits a position group featuring two-time 1,000-yard rusher Jordan Howard and a running game that ranked in the middle of the pack in rush attempts (18th) and yards (16th).
Howard’s 4.61 yards per carry since 2016 is the fifth highest average among running backs with at least 300 carries. Only Mark Ingram (4.98), Bilal Powell (4.83), Ezekiel Elliott (4.63), and LeSean McCoy (4.62) have a better per carry average than Howard. That’s good company to hang around with as far as running backs are concerned.
Check out our original post on London here.