Wednesday, 17 October, 2018

Bears fire coach John Fox after a 5-11 season

Chicago Bears head coach John Fox in the third quarter against the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium Sunday Dec. 31 2017 Report | Bears fire John Fox
Frederick Owens | 01 January, 2018, 19:56

Head coach John Fox was sacked by the Chicago Bears on Monday after finishing last in the NFC North for the third consecutive season.

The Bears initially signed Fox to a four-year deal in January 2015, and his first two seasons on the sideline weren't exactly smooth.

Yet, following the Bears' loss Sunday in Minnesota, dropping them to 5-11 this season and 14-38 in three years under Fox, the infamously tight-lipped coach was only able to make good on half of his goal.

The Bears hired John Fox in 2015 to replace Marc Trestman.

A week later, the Bears lost at home, 17-15, to Fox's former team and eventual Super Bowl champion Denver Broncos when Jeremy Langford was stopped on a two-point conversion attempt in the final minute. That matched the win total from 2014 and pulled the Bears into the outskirts of the playoff picture.

After two years of presenting a united front, general manager Ryan Pace began to stray his direction from Fox, trading up to the second overall pick to select quarterback Mitchell Trubisky and drafting tight end Adam Shaheen out of Division-II Ashland in the second round.

The Bears were also plagued by medical issues under center when quarterback Jay Cutler was shut down with a season-ending shoulder injury after five appearances.

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Fox wasn't prepared for Pace's bold move to draft Trubisky.

The three years of Fox were largely defined by failures in close games, as the Bears were 9-19 in one-score contests during that span.

Chicago has had four consecutive losing seasons - each with 10 or more losses. The team was fresh off the bye week and facing a depleted Packers team missing Aaron Rodgers to a broken collarbone.

With the Bears, Fox's.292 winning percentage is second-worst in franchise history to Abe Gibron, who went 11-30-1 (.274) from 1972 to 1974.

Loggains failed to consistently maximize his few playmakers and build weekly game plans that emphasized the team's clear strength and the conservative Fox's preferred mode of offense - a powerful ground game.

Never considered a strong in-game coach, Fox seemed to lose the fan base through his ultra conservatism, in addition to his unwillingness to divulge even the most benign information to the media.

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