It’s an interesting move by Lovie Smith to add an assistant defensive line coach to the mix in Northwestern’s Eric Washington.
It makes sense with the numbers on the line and the youth. The Bears are going to be counting on a big season next year from tackle Dusty Dvoracek, and will need a bounce back season from Mark Anderson at end. The team insists he graded out well for the season, but the fact is his production wasn’t nearly what it was as a rookie. Then there’s Matt Toeaina, the late-season pickup from Cincinnati, who made a nice impression in the final three games.
The team also employs assistant position coaches on the offensive line and in the secondary, as well as with special teams, groups that have big numbers.
Smith still is working to replace linebackers coach Hardy Nickerson. Once he does that, and provided there are not other changes to the structure, there will be 19 coaches on staff. That’s easily the largest in recent franchise history.
Remember, John Shoop used to resist the idea of even having a quarterbacks coach on staff when he started off as the offensive coordinator. He didn’t want anything to potentially impede his direct communication with the quarterbacks. That, from a former quarterbacks coach.
FASSITT STILL LOOKING
A source close to cornerback Greg Fassitt said he was weighing offers from a couple clubs before deciding who to sign a reserve/futures contract with. The Bears had wanted him back after he spent the entire season on the practice squad, but that appears unlikely at this point.
Fassitt, a native of New Orleans and a Grambling State product, is believed to be considering an opportunity with the Saints.