May 14, 2013; Lake Forest, IL, USA; Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Mel Tucker during organized team activities at Halas Hall. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Bears Need To Make A Decision On Mel Tucker’s Future


At last Thursday’s end of the season press conference, Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman failed to give a vote of confidence to defensive coordinator Mel Tucker.

The lack of comment on Tucker’s future last Thursday by Trestman ignited speculation that the Bears will be with a new defensive coordinator for the third season in a row.

There is no question that the Bears defense struggled in its first year under Tucker in 2013. The question becomes were those struggles the result of poor scheming by Tucker or the handful of injuries that the team suffered on the defensive side. Using deductive reasoning, it is rather evident that the Bears front office feel the struggles may be the result of poor scheming.

During the press conference last Thursday, Trestman and general manager Phil Emery seemed to make it a point that injuries are never an excuse in the NFL. With that sentiment, the Bears essentially hung Tucker out to dry.

But it has been a week since that press conference and the fate of Tucker is still undetermined.

While the new league year does not start until mid-March, it would be in the Bears best interest to make a decision on Tucker as soon as possible.

Lets operate under the assumption that the Bears are indeed going to part ways with Tucker. Now–as in this week–would be the time to do so. There are still several head coaching positions open in the NFL. As was the case last season when the Bears hired Trestman, a new coach typically prefers to bring in their own coaching staff. Meaning as soon as the head coaching positions fill up, there will be a run on coordinators–especially defensive coordinators.

Meaning available defensive coordinators such as former Dallas Cowboys head coach Wade Phillips may soon be off the market. Phillips was let go as the Texans defensive coordinator last week. If the Bears wait to fire Tucker, then it stands to reason that the team will miss out on Phillips.

Regardless of what the Bears decide to do with Tucker, the team needs to make a decision soon as this will go a long way in determining the direction that Emery wants to take when improving the defense this off-season.

Tags: Chicago Bears

  • Erik Lambert

    Trestman and Emery have proven to be slow but methodical and efficient decision-makers. They are going to cover every basis and not make the call until they are certain it’s the right one. I understand Tucker got a raw deal with all the injuries but I’m also convinced he’s a mediocre coordinator. He has his moments but lacks that ability to elevate his group when he has to like a Dom Capers or Mike Zimmer can. Wade Phillips is a proven coach who regularly can field a top ten unit. There is also Ray Horton from Cleveland or even Jim Schwartz who was successful for a long time in Tennessee.

  • Johnathan Wood

    They said in their press conference they had no timetable for this decision and specifically mentioned it could take until February.

    This suggests to me that there is a specific guy coaching for a playoff team that they want, but they are hanging onto Tucker until they know if they can get their man or not.

    One guy who could make sense is San Francisco secondary coach Ed Donatell. He has been a DC in the past in Atlanta and GB and had success in both spots, and he knows Emery from his time in ATL. He also comes from SF’s hybrid 3-4/4-3, which is what the Bears supposedly want to switch to.

    • http://dawindycity.com/ Jordan Campbell

      That is a very good point. I was actually thinking of that possibility when I was writing this post. Donatell would be an appealing option.