Ryan Pace hired the wrong head coaches.
The first major decision Pace had to make in 2015 was he had to hire a head coach. The rumor was he wanted to hire Dan Quinn but was convinced by ownership to hire veteran head coach John Fox.
Fox took the Broncos and the Panthers to the Super Bowl. The thought was pairing a successful veteran head coach with a rookie general manager would be a winning recipe.
It was not.
It was three years where the Bears went 14-34 during the span. Fox coached as if he was more interested in improving the team’s practice facility than improving the team on the field.
Pace then hired Matt Nagy from the Kansas City Chiefs to groom Trubisky. The future was bright in 2018 when Nagy won Coach of the Year and the NFC North.
It was all downhill from there as the Bears went 22-27 during the next four seasons. Nagy failed to develop Trubisky. It did not help that he refused to alter his offense to fit Trubisky’s strengths.
Nagy also did not come up with a good development plan for Justin Fields beyond wanting to sit him for his entire rookie season. That would prove to be fatal for Nagy’s head coaching career with the Bears.
First, it was wasted development time for Fields when he showed in the 2021 preseason that his talent was good enough to start from Day One. Second, Nagy refused to alter his offense again to fit it to Fields’ strengths when Dalton got hurt.
Nagy was brought in to bring a high-powered, high-scoring offense to Chicago. Instead, the Bears struggled to move the ball and score points. Nagy was also bad at calling plays. Nagy had to replace himself twice during his tenure as the offensive play caller.
Fields is starting to thrive under new offensive coordinator Luke Getsy and head coach Matt Eberflus. It is because both are willing to tailor the offense to his strengths and do not have the ego to shoehorn him into their idea of what makes a good offense.
It is almost night and day from a year ago when Fields looked lost under Nagy’s tutelage. Pace hired Nagy despite Nagy having only four games calling plays and only studying under Andy Reid. Nagy proved that inexperience and loyalty to Reid’s system hampered his coaching ability.
By hiring Fox and Nagy, the Chicago Bears had a strong team culture but they were unable to win. That is the only thing a coach is ultimately judged on.