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Chuck Pagano announced as Bears’ new defensive coordinator

Chuck Pagano, Bears

The Chicago Bears, per Adam Schefter of ESPN, will be hiring Chuck Pagano as the team’s defensive coordinator.

The Bears had to move on from their former defensive coordinator Vic Fangio as he was hired by the Denver Broncos as their head coach. This led to an opening on the staff of the NFL’s top defense. Rumor had it Todd Bowles might replace Fangio, but he signed on Tampa Bay’s staff before Fangio even was hired elsewhere.

The Bears decided to reach out and grab a long-time NFL veteran head coach in Pagano. He runs a 3-4 like his predecessor, though he will likely drop more linebackers in coverage and play more man than Fangio did. Perhaps he’ll hold the defense on a tighter lock. He is still a very aggressive-minded coach.

His first head coaching job was with Indianapolis with the Colts from 2012 to 2017. Many of his defensive players aged and the team’s front office did not do a great job in revitalizing his tools to work with. Before then, Pagano had been a coach in the collegiate ranks since 1984 and has been in the NFL since 2001. He brings a lot of experience and knowledge to the table, having been a linebacker and defensive back coach as well.

The Bears last season went 13-3 under head coach Matt Nagy. Their defense was simply stifling, leading the NFL in total takeovers and defensive scoring. Pagano has the opportunity to coach a great core of defensive players that include Khalil Mack, Akiem Hicks, and Eddie Jackson.