Bears promote Mike Tice to offensive coordinator role

Bears promote Mike Tice to offensive coordinator role

Fox Sports’ Jay Glazer first reported the news this morning that the Chicago Bears have promoted offensive line coach Mike Tice to fill their vacant offensive coordinator position. The Bears confirmed the news shortly thereafter.

According to the team, they plan to hire a replacement offensive line coach—although Tice will remain involved on some level—as well as an offensive coordinator’s assistant to replace former QB coach Shane Day and also to assist with the passing game. Mike Tice, however, will call plays on gameday.

According to Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times, who used to cover the Vikings during Tice’s tenure there, the former head coach does have experience calling offensive plays. He has never held the role of offensive coordinator, though.

This move only reinforces my position that Lovie Smith is not as powerful at Halas Hall as many have feared over the last couple of days, following the firing of general manager Jerry Angelo. Smith did ultimately make the decision to promote Tice—per his role as head coach—but it gives the sense that he feels the pressure to win next season, which was adamantly stated as being the goal by both Ted Phillips and George McCaskey this week.

Everything that has happened for the Bears this offseason paints the picture of taking one last run towards a championship before the rebuilding begins. And, the current core in place has the ability to do that if the majority of the coaching staff remains in place, the players stay relatively healthy and the team gets some help in the draft.

The Bears were simply not comfortable taking that last shot at a title with another Angelo draft class. Mark my words; it may take a Super Bowl victory to keep Lovie Smith and crew here after next season. And if they don’t accomplish that, the new GM will begin his reign.

Here's the press release on the Tice decision, as sent out by the Bears today.

Filed under: Coaches and Management

Tags: Mike Tice


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  • Appointing Tice was expected, especially since I had said earlier somewhere that while Lovie might have the authority to pick his coaches, whether anyone would have the authority to sign an outsider in the absence of a G.M. You also seemed to explain what would happen in the case of a conflict on deciding between a rushing and passing play. However, this seems like the same type of office politics as a couple of years ago, where Lovie was the head coach and the offensive coordinator, but Marinelli was the assistant head coach and D Line coach.

    Also, I couldn't figure out the report in the Trib that Tice was chagrined at not getting the opportunity to seek career advancement since he was not given permission to talk a coordinator position with another team. Wasn't he Minnesota's head coach. Maybe it is career advancement to be knocked down two steps and then try to move up one. You imply similar by stating that he hasn't called an offense before, but he was formerly responsible for one.

  • In reply to jack:

    Yeah, I agree that it's a little strange to have a "passing coordinator." I wish they would just call the other guy a QB coach and do what they want internally. Although, why that would make any difference to me ... I don't know. My only concern is innovation in the passing game. I'm old-school, I love a good run-game, but they'll need to get explosive to keep pace with the Packers and Lions. Both Lovie and Tice said they would do that, but it does still concern me.

    Yeah, that's the thing with the block the Bears put on him last year: He was a head coach but never an offensive coordinator, which was what he was being sought for. So, it would have been an advancement. He DID call plays, however, in Minny; something a lot of media folks are getting wrong. Jensen of the Sun-Times personally covered him when he did. He was NOT the official o-coordinator then, tho.

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