Chicago Bears: Revisiting the career of Lovie Smith, why he was fired

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Chicago Bears, Lovie Smith

Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

On December 31st, 2012, the Chicago Bears fired former head coach Lovie Smith after a 10-6 season. After seven years, the question of why the Bears fired Smith is on everybody’s mind.

Before I start off, I do like Lovie Smith. He was a great defensive coach but he had the same problem every coach the Chicago Bears‘ have had since Mike Ditka. That problem was consistency on the offensive side of the ball. Even though Smith had Jay Cutler, who is the all-time leader in quarterback statistics for the team, they only made the playoffs one time together.

Let’s take a look back in time. On December 29th, 2003, the Bears fired former coach Dick Jauron. Jauron was hired to coach the team after Dave Wannstedt was fired. Jauron would have a 35-45 record with the team and one playoff appearance in five seasons.

The 2003 Bears were coming off of a 7-9 season, where they drafted their quarterback for the future, Rex Grossman. Grossman only started three games that season, he finished with a 2-1 record. The team was young and under third-year general manager Jerry Angelo, things were looking up.

In the 2003 draft class, the Bears drafted Charles Tillman and Lance Briggs. They already had Brian Urlacher at the time, so those three players were a good start to build a successful defense around. When the Bears looked for their new coach, they went for someone who had success somewhere else but could grow with the team. Smith was young, had success as the Rams; defensive coordinator, and was a good fit for the team.

Rams’ head coach Mike Martz, who would later join Smith in Chicago, believed this was a great move for Chicago. Martz knew the kind of guy Smith was and believed a change of scenery at the head coach position could make this team successful. Martz was somewhat correct.

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