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Northern Star

The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

COLUMN: 3 coaching options to save Bears from Eberflus era

AP Photo
Chicago Bears head coach Matt Eberflus speaks during a press conference following the Bears’ 12-10 victory over the Minnesota Vikings on Monday. Sports Reporter Eddie Miller discusses possible replacements for Eberflus following the 2023-2024 season. (AP Photo)

The Chicago Bears sit at 4-8, last place in the NFC North. Head coach Matt Eberflus has been a disappointment and is lucky that he still has the job. The Bears’ issues run deeper than a head coach, but there are far better options. 

Jim Harbaugh 

Head coach of the University of Michigan Jim Harbaugh has been rumored to leave the Wolverines for the past couple of years. This season, Harbaugh has led Michigan to the No. 2 overall team in the country. Michigan is on the cusp of clinching their third-straight College Football Playoff appearance. 

The Wolverines finished the regular season second in the country in total defense, fourth in passing yards allowed and sixth in rushing defense, according to the NCAA

Harbaugh is the only coach on the list who has experience as an NFL head coach. He coached the San Francisco 49ers from 2011-2014 and led the team to a Super Bowl appearance in 2013. 

Given his experience, Harbaugh would be my choice for the next Bears coach. 

Ben Johnson 

Offensive coordinator for the Detroit Lions Ben Johnson is primed to get a head coaching role. Johnson has been a key factor in the Lions’ success this season. 

Detroit stands at 8-3 and is currently first place in the NFC North and third in the entire NFC. The Lions offense has been electric. Detroit ranks sixth in the NFL in rushing yards and sixth in passing yards. 

In Johnson’s first season as offensive coordinator, the Lions logged their first season in franchise history with more than 4,000 passing yards and 2,000 rushing yards, according to the Lions. Detroit finished the 2022 season fifth in points per game and fourth in total offense. 

Outside of Harbaugh, Johnson is the next coach I would target. 

Eric Bienemy 

Offensive coordinator for the Washington Commanders Eric Bienemy fits the role as one of the NFL’s best offensive minds. Bienemy’s career caught traction while being the offensive coordinator for the Kansas City Chiefs. 

Bienemy is known for his “tough love” style of coaching that is needed in Chicago. Furthermore, he has consistently coached under a west coast style offense. The west coast offense is pass heavy, replacing runs with short passes to running backs. 

This season, Bienemy’s offense leads the NFL in passing yards and is 19th in the NFL in rushing yards. 

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