The Bears made the playoffs at 8-8 and the assumption is this allows Matt Nagy to retain his job for another year.
Thanks to the Philadelphia Eagles everything is in play again.
The Eagles fired Doug Pederson three years after he won a Super Bowl, two years after he beat the Bears in the double-doink game and then gave the New Orleans Saints a scare in the divisional round.
Pederson's Eagles made the playoffs three straight years, including their Lombardi Trophy win using backup quarterback Nick Foles.
The Bears haven't had a losing record yet under Nagy like the Eagles had this season and in 2016 with Pederson, but they haven't attained anything close to the overall success he did, either.
So a Super Bowl-winning coach has one season leeway after a divisional title in Philadelphia, but Nagy should be safe in Chicago after a six-game losing streak and backing into the playoffs during his third season?
It doesn't even look like a tough call when this is all taken into account.
If you're the McCaskey family and you're watching a so-called offensive genius coaching the team to nine points in the playoffs against the Saints, who didn't have their top pass rusher due to injury, why sit on your hands? This is a coach who was supposed to be able to generate an offense and they've finished 21st, 29th and 25th in offense the last three years.
How is it that the firing press conference hasn't already been called?
This isn't necessarily to urge Nagy's firing.
Rather, it's simply to suggest the idea his job is entirely safe now is absurd. After all, they made the plays because they beat Houston, Jacksonville and Minnesota, then had the 49ers and Rams take out the Cardinals for them.
At the very least, there needs to be some kind of accountability going forward.
If they're not firing Nagy when coaches like Doug Pederson can be fired, then it wouldn't be shocking if they were to make other changes on the coaching staff.
They made change last year when they went 8-8.
Here are some potential staff firings to consider:
1. Wide receivers coach Mike Furrey
This would no doubt shake everyone up on that coaching staff. Furrey is a good guy, a fiery type. Yet, his two receivers put them in a big hole in Sunday's playoff game with stupidity. Anthony Miller can't be attacking the punk, Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, just because he's mouthy. They all knew this would happen. Javon Wims had already gotten in trouble for this. And speaking of Wims, how does an NFL receiver drop a pass like the one he let fall through his hands. It took four years for Mitchell Trubisky to throw a perfect deep ball and have a receiver that wide open behind the defense, and when he finally threw one Wims couldn't catch it. The receivers coach needs to take the fall for these things. Then the perpetrating receivers need to go.
2. Defensive backs coach Deshean Townsend
When Ed Donatell was Bears defensive backs coach, they expected the interception. They were grabbing deflected passes. They occasionally jumped routes effectively, especially slot cornerbacks. They tackled. Sunday's display of tackling looked like they thought the Saints receivers had COVID-19. No one wanted to drag them to the ground. The coverage wasn't necessarily poor, but during the majority of the season they seemed to struggle with fundamentals.
Bears cornerbacks had one interception in the regular season and it came in the opener. Defensive backs overall made 21 interceptions in 2018. In 2019 they made four and this season six.
3. Passing game coordinator Dave Ragone
He's been a part of the offensive coaching on this team since Jay Cutler was the quarterback in 2016. They finished 14th, 32nd (last), 21st, 25th and 22nd in passing with Ragone on staff. He was quarterbacks coach prior to becoming passing game coordinator this season. It could be time to take a look at an alternative. They were 14th, by the way, in Ragone's first year with Cutler at quarterback, since then buried. That's an open invitation for Cutler to post a "Miss me now?" on Instagram.
4. Outside linebackers coach Ted Monachino
When Brandon Staley left the Bears, Monachino became outside linebackers coach.
The Bears had 20 1/2 sacks and 40 hits on the quarterback in 2018. In the last two years under Monachino they've had 13 1/2 sacks and 36 hits, and 15 sacks and 29 hits. They had Leonard Floyd in Chicago and got three sacks from him in 2019, cut him and then he had career highs of 10 1/2 sacks and 19 quarterback hits this year in Staley's Rams defense. Robert Quinn made two sacks and had six quarterback hits this year with the Bears at outside linebacker. Last year in Dallas he had 11 1/2 sacks and 22 quarterback hits. There are some who would suggest Quinn can't play linebacker in a 3-4, but when he did it with the Rams he still had 6 1/2 more sacks and six more quarterback hits in 2017 than he did this season.