Report: Bears have interest in top coaching candidate Eric Bieniemy
Joe Nicholson - USA Today Sports

Report: Bears have interest in top coaching candidate Eric Bieniemy

by - Senior Writer -

It's no secret, but the jury is still out on second-year head coach Matt Eberflus. Granted, there has been significant improvement from the Bears throughout the season, but this team has still underachieved in many areas, and that all falls on the head coach. Ryan Poles did what he needed to do to put the best talent around Justin Fields, but yet Fields continues to struggle, and a lot of that falls on Luke Getsy, and his play calling, and Eberlus fails to realize that.

Knowing that Fields is entering year four of his rookie deal and with the Bears holding two of the top five picks, the expectation is they draft Marvin Harrison Jr with one of those picks to give Fields another weapon. The next step would be to find a new offensive coordinator and potentially a new head coach, as the Bears may want to get away from the defensive mindset and get back to an offensive-minded coach.

Who that coach would be is an entirely different question, but look for the name Eric Bieniemy to be talked about again this offseason. Bieniemy is no stranger to having his name linked to the Bears, as you heard his name being discussed two seasons ago before Eberflus got the job. He returned to Kansas City to be their offensive coordinator one more season before jumping to Washington this year.

Given the struggles that the Commanders are going through and with Ron Rivera all but gone at the end of the season, Bieniemy may also choose to leave our nation's capital in an effort to land his first career head coaching gig.

Diving into this further, you have other people backing the same train of thought as NFL insider Josina Anderson had this to say on her X Account.

"I'm told the Chicago Bears are expected to have interest in Commanders Assistant Head Coach and Offensive Coordinator Eric Bieniemy among others," she posted. "The general knowledge around the league is that Bears GM Ryan Poles will evaluate everything after the season, including Matt Eberflus, as his team sits at 4-8 this season."

While that may not directly say that Eberflus is out of a job at this point, the fact that Poles is evaluating where things sit just two years into his coaching stint shows that he may even feel that this team should be better. There has been a lot to make about Bieniemy the past few seasons, and most of that comes on the coaching front.

He has been regarded as one of the best offensive coordinators in the game, but some questioned how good he was, considering Andy Reid did most of the playcalling in KC. That was one of the reasons why he wanted to go to Washington in the first place, to prove he can run an offense without Reid as the front man. After working his way up through the coaching ranks, where he spent time as a RB coach, Bieniemy finally landed his first offensive coordinator gig for the University of Colorado in 2011 and stayed there until 2012 before going to KC.

Initially, the Chiefs' RB coach, Bieniemy, took over as OC in 2018, which was about the time when Patrick Mahomes turned into the Mahomes everyone loves. Bieniemy deserves some credit for that, but others feel that Reid was the main reason Mahomes had that success. Looking to prove he could run an offense, Bieniemy elected to go to Washington this season and has proven once again he does know how to run an offense.

Granted, the Commanders are not a great team by any means; their defense has been the issue, as they have been good enough offensively to win games. Sam Howell looks the part of a franchise QB and is playing better than anyone thought he would. Look over at KC, where Matt Nagy took over for Bieniemy, and the KC offense looks the worst it has looked since Mahomes got there, so Bieniemy deserves more credit than what he received.

One of the biggest questions surrounding Bieniemy is why he has yet to be a head coach up to this point. This former player-turned-coach with over 20 years of coaching experience is nearing 55. At some point, you have to give him a chance to see what he can do. Many people around the NFL know Bieniemy has what it takes to become a coach, but they have said he doesn't always interview the best, which takes him out of the running for some jobs.

That is understandable when it comes to running a team, but at some point, you have to look at the body of work he has done leading up to the season. Bieniemy has done amazing things with a pair of young QBs as a playcaller. Fields would be the most athletic QB he has ever had an opportunity to work with, and with an offense designed to be like the old KC offense in terms of speed, this would be a match made in heaven for both sides.

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