Bears

Babich latest Bears coach to find work before Smith

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Babich latest Bears coach to find work before Smith

The Bears and Jacksonville Jaguars have effectively swapped defensive coordinators, with Bob Babich agreeing to terms to become the Jaguars coordinator, sources told CSNChicago.com.
The move came a day after Mel Tucker left Jacksonville to become D-coordinator on the staff of new head coach Marc Trestman.
Babich, nicknamed Bullet by Lance Briggs, Brian Urlacher and the Bears linebacker corps, was the Bears defensive coordinator under Lovie Smith from 2007-2009, promoted from linebackers coach after Ron Rivera was let go. Smith brought Babich with him from St. Louis where Smith was coordinator and Babich the linebackers coach for the Rams in 2003.
Babich becomes the latest Smith assistant to land a job elsewhere, curiously perhaps, before Smith himself finds work.Rod Marinelli was hired as defensive line coach for the Dallas Cowboys on Friday after turning down an opportunity to remain on staff with the Bears. Marinelli reportedly did not wish to remain with the Bears after Smiths dismissal and will work with old friend Monte Kiffin on the reconstructed Dallas defensive staff.Ironically, the Jaguars were making efforts to lure Marinelli to Jacksonville before he agreed with the Cowboys.
Dave Toub joined Andy Reids staff in Kansas City as special teams coordinator after an unsuccessful interview to become Bears head coach.

NFL will reportedly cut 2020 preseason in half; will drop Weeks 1 and 4

NFL will reportedly cut 2020 preseason in half; will drop Weeks 1 and 4

It's long been rumored, but on Wednesday things became a bit more official: the NFL will reportedly cut the 2020 preseason in half: 

Shortening the preseason has been a topic of conversation around the league for a while now, but a new urgency has been attached to the idea because of the ongoing the COVID-19 pandemic. As states continue struggling with rising infection rates, beginning the season on time looks more and more unlikely. The NFL has already altered their season schedule to accomodate for a delayed start or early-season interruption. 

It's especially bad news for the Bears, who were planning on using all four preseason games to determine whether Nick Foles or Mitch Trubisky would win the starting quarterback job. Without half their preseason games (they'd lose games against Cleveland and Tennessee), things obviously become much trickier. 

Bears rookie pass rusher Trevis Gipson has talent to contribute quickly

Bears rookie pass rusher Trevis Gipson has talent to contribute quickly

In talking to various trusted football minds around the NFL recently, two common thoughts come up when discussing Bears rookie pass rusher Trevis Gipson:


1. He should have been drafted in the fourth round.
2. He was playing out of position at Tulsa.


It’s very possible that the latter impacted the former. The Bears traded up in the fifth round to draft Gipson at No. 155 overall and they’ve been very decisive with their plan for him – he’s going to be a 3-4 outside linebacker in Chicago.

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Many of the “tweener” pass rush prospects in the NFL Draft play in different fronts in college than they do when they transition to the NFL. In Gipson’s case, he played in a three-man front at Tulsa, but was used more as a five-technique on the line of scrimmage. With the Bears, he’ll be in a base 3-4 defense, but playing a different position on the edge.
You don’t have to watch a lot of tape to understand why Bears general manager Ryan Pace and defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano want to use Gipson on the edge. At 6’6 ⅜” and 261 pounds, he has an 81 ¼” wing span that can’t be taught and his lengthy frame doesn’t give him a lot of leverage when he lines up in tight spaces on the line. He’s better off using that length on the edge and, in my opinion, his best college tape came when he was lined up wide.


Realistic rookie expectations: Gipson is a bit of a project because he’s switching positions and he certainly hasn’t been helped by COVID-19 shutting down offseason practices. But the Bears aren’t asking him to start right away. They have Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn to rush the passer. Gipson has the talent to contribute as a rotational player and perhaps he can provide an occasional spark off the bench. His college production doesn’t lie. Gipson had 12 sacks and 24 tackles for loss in his final two seasons at Tulsa.

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