Coach Lovie Smith remarked after this season that every coach on our staffyou would like to see them take another step. He may get his wish, unfortunately for his own staff fortunes.
The Oakland Raiders have requested permission to interview offensive coordinator Mike Tice for their vacant head-coaching job, a story first reported by the Tribune. The Bears dont have a choice but to give that permission, since under NFL rules, assistants are always permitted to explore head-coaching jobs even if still under contract to their current team.
The Raiders have an extensive candidate list numbering nearly a dozen, and new general manager Reggie McKenzie has those and potentially others to evaluate.
The problem for the Bears, however, is potentially serious.
They and Tice, a former head coach with the Minnesota Vikings while McKenzie was a member of the Green Bay Packers front office, are in the process of hiring a passing-game coordinator as a top Tice assistant. Former quarterbacks coach Greg Olsen has been interviewed and others are on Tices list.
But that process now potentially grinds to a dangerous halt until the Tice-Oakland situation plays itself out. Indeed, if Tice leaves, the Bears could well be interviewing those candidates, possibly including Clyde Christensen of the Indianapolis Colts, for the full coordinators position.
Tice was promoted from offensive line coach to coordinator just days after the Bears parted ways with Mike Martz. He has been a dominant influence on the offense over the past two years, directing an offensive line that was key in the Bears rushing for 2,015 yards in 2011 despite losing quarterback Jay Cutler after 10 games and Matt Forte two games later.
Matt Nagy announced on Thursday afternoon the defensive lineman Bilal Nichols broke his hand in the Bears' 16-14 win over Denver last Sunday.
The team expects him to miss Monday night's game in Washington, but he likely won't be put on IR.
Nichols, whose hand was already in a cast by the time media were allowed in Denver's locker room, could concievably play with a cast/club on the broken hand, according to Nagy. Edge rusher Leonard Floyd did the same thing for the first half of last season after he broke his hand in preseason.
"When you are in the trenches like that, you have to figure out where you are with the club, no club, your fingers and using them," Nagy added.
Nichols had a productive first year in 2018, appearing in 14 games (and starting six) while recording three sacks, seven QB hits, and five tackles for loss. Analytics site Pro Football Focus gave Nichols a 77.0 rating last season, which was the third-best score for a Bears' defensive lineman.
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Maybe, just maybe, Chicago will play host to the Super Bowl one day. And while there are no immediate plans for the world's greatest sporting event to come to the city, there was a 'bowl' game worth noting that took place on the hallowed grounds of Soldier Field.
Yes, you read that right. Nick Jonas, one of the acclaimed members of the Jonas Brothers, was surprised by his wife with a birthday football game this week that included 20 of his closest friends and took place at none other than Soldier Field. The stadium was rented for the event and was even attended by Anthony Adams.
"My beautiful wife surprised me with a touch football game with some of my closest friends and family on the one and only Soldier Field in Chicago (!!!) followed by a few hours of Topgolf, and then a party where pizza, tequila, cake, and cigars were involved," Jonas wrote via social media.
Let's hope this isn't the most meaningful game played at the stadium this season.