The first three years of Matt Nagy’s tenure as Chicago Bears head coach have undoubtedly been eventful, often leaving much to be desired. After a 12-4 season in his first year (2018), the Chicago Bears had goals of being a Super Bowl contender, only to end up producing consecutive 8-8 records in both the 2019 and 2020 seasons.
Consider this season to be a fresh start for Nagy and Co.
“There is a really positive vibe going around our building right now, it’s healthy,” Nagy said during the Chicago Bears start of training camp presser.
Feeling confident with your team is one thing but producing the results on the field is a whole different reality entirely. Nagy is believed to be on the hot seat, along with General Manager Ryan Pace, depending heavily on how they handle rookie QB Justin Fields. For a coach on a possible short leash, Nagy is focused on turning the page to a new chapter.
“Let’s not worry about the past or what can happen in the future. I think we are in a good place to handle success and failure. Let the chips fall where they may.”
Nagy also touched on mistakes he’s made during his head coaching career, emphasizing that he sees them as lessons learned rather than failure. “For me those setbacks, or chances for me to learn, I’m trying to learn from those this year so I can be the best coach I can be to help our team,” said Nagy.
“I feel really comfortable with the players, and that’s not just on gamedays, or during the offseason, sometimes its even just talking to players during meetings.”
One player Nagy seems to have developed a close bond with is Bears running back David Montgomery. “I trust him, and he trusts me. David and I have a phenomenal relationship, we are close and we look forward to getting started with training camp,” said Nagy.
As alluded to in an article earlier today, Nagy feels getting Montgomery 20 carries per game is doable, especially if they have a lead late in ballgames. A solid offensive line, plus commitment to the run game would surely be an improvement to Nagy’s shortcomings on offense.
Nagy is also more open to giving the opportunity for players to play more during the preseason.
“My mindset has shifted more towards aggressiveness,” said Nagy. “The preseason is real. Real tackling, real situations, and it’ll help evaluate talent at different positions.”
Going into the 2019 season, Nagy was heavily criticized for refusing to play starters during the pre-season. Perhaps in that time, the Bears felt they knew what they had and felt confident in their roster after an extremely successful 2018 season. In 2020, COVID-19 eliminated any chance for preseason games.
Nagy voiced how substantial the competition is this year for starting positions across all three phases of the team. “Since He (Ryan) and I have been together, I feel like competition is at an all-time high across the board,” said Nagy.
With quarterback being the main position in immense competition this year, Nagy and Pace also discussed positions such as cornerback, kick returner, offensive line, and receiver being up for competition.
Having various positions open to competition for starting roles, it is no surprise Nagy is looking to use the preseason to evaluate talent across the depth chart.
Chicago Bears training camp begins at Halas Hall July 28 and ends on August 30. A limited number of fans will be allowed to attend 14 open practices from July 29 to August 25.