Vic Fangio expected to return as Bears defensive coordinator


Helfrich, 44, will join the staff of new head coach Matt Nagy, the former Chiefs offensive coordinator who was hired to replace John Fox.

Fangio is out of contract after three seasons with the organization and he wants to ensure his choice of teams is the one that serves him best. Other coaches have been hired which cover the special teams, running backs, and offensive line.

Nagy has been busy with hiring a coaching staff, using various connections including those from his agency, Athletes First, which represents many coaches, including Helfrich. The defense ranked 10th in yards and ninth in points under Fangio last season.

The Bears also announced Friday that Chris Tabor will become special teams coordinator and Charles London will take over as running backs coach.

Mark Helfrich: The former OR head coach will serve as Nagy's offensive coordinator, although Nagy is expected to call his own plays.

Former Oregon Ducks coach Mark Helfrich last spring reached a settlement with his former employer that paid him a lump sum of almost $8.1 million. Though there are still coaching positions to be filled, the basic structure has been put in place.

The Bears finished 5-11 in 2017 and have missed the postseason in 10 of the last 11 years. The status of assistant offensive line coach Ben Wilkerson is unknown. Jones posted on social media yesterday that he had a procedure earlier this week to fix the shoulder he injured in the Week 15 win against the Chicago Bears.

Fuller and Hicks are typical of players who have prospered in Fangio's system and likely would benefit from the continuity. Six of those players never made the Pro Bowl before they played for Fangio and haven't made it since he left.

For now, the waiting game with Fangio continues and if the Bears' fallback plans aren't currently available, there is no reason to hurry.