It was a bit of a bombshell when Adam Jahns of the Athletic revealed that the Chicago Bears were talking to Mike Singletary about the defensive coordinator job. The franchise legend is a Hall of Fame player but hasn’t coached in the NFL since 2016. He also has never actually been a coordinator in his career. So it would’ve been a monumental gamble for them to go with him. In the end, they decided to promote Sean Desai to the job instead.
The decision was a logical one. Desai had been on the staff since 2013. He was highly respected both by the players and fellow coaches. He was a disciple of Vic Fangio and is expected to run a similar defensive system to the former Bears coordinator. While not bringing the prestige of a more experienced coach, it’s a calculated move with lots of upside.
That means people should stop talking about Singletary, right?
Not just yet. Shortly after the Desai promotion was made official, one of his first moves was to part ways with outside linebackers coach Ted Monachino. It wasn’t a huge surprise. Monachino was a Chuck Pagano guy and hadn’t really done good work with his position group the past two years. So that’s one spot they’ll have to fill.
Is it possible they may already have a replacement in mind? While Singletary may have interviewed officially for the defensive coordinator job, it is quite possible the Bears were also talking to him about other positions too. Specifically a linebackers job. This is the position he’s coached for many years in the NFL, often with a lot of success. Sliding him into Monachino’s spot would actually make a lot of sense.
Mike Singletary has done this sort of job before
In fact, his first major coaching position in the NFL was as an outside linebackers coach for the Baltimore Ravens from 2003 to 2004. The results were pretty favorable. Rookie Terrell Suggs had 12 sacks that first year while Peter Boulware made the Pro Bowl with 8.5. The next season, Suggs had 10.5 sacks while rising youngster Adalius Thomas broke out with eight.
He soon left for San Francisco where he took over their linebackers group. There he oversaw the development of All-Pro Patrick Willis. After leaving the 49ers in 2011, he quickly signed on in Minnesota where he helped turn Chad Greenway into a Pro Bowler. So Mike Singletary has shown that despite his questionable track record as a head coach, he knows how to get results from his linebackers.
Not a surprise since he’s a former all-time great himself.
He is qualified for the job and just imagine the outpouring of enthusiasm from Bears fans. They’d be over the moon at the prospect of bringing one of their longtime heroes into the fold. Samurai returns from a long journey to help save the defense once again. It would be a fun story and a memorable one if he ended up getting Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn back to their customary forms. This is a move to watch for.