Chicago Sun-Times

Marinelli wanted to get back to coaching defensive line

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We connected with the agent for new defensive line coach Rod Marinelli, Frank Bauer, and he's excited about the situation.

Imagine that. Bauer also represents head coach Lovie Smith, offensive coordinator Ron Turner and defensive coordinator Bob Babich.

But Bauer has reason to be feeling good about this. It's a pairing that makes sense. The Bears got the best defensive line coach available to coach the scheme that he knows best.

Bauer said that Marinelli was specific in saying he did not want to be a defensive coordinator, a key reason why he dropped out of the running in Seattle. His goal was to return to his roots as a line coach and become a teacher again while holding the title of assistant head coach, something that will make Marinelli the second-highest paid Bears' coach behind Smith.

"He had a lot of clubs chasing him,'' Bauer said. "But he knows these guys inside and out and that's where he wanted to be.''

Marinelli chose the Bears over the Houston Texans, who also offered him a job as defensive line coach, and Tampa Bay called Bauer on Saturday. The head coach of one of the remaining playoff teams also called, Bauer said, and asked Marinelli to wait until his team's season was over to listen to overtures.

"It was tough for Rod on Friday,'' Bauer said. "I told him to sleep on it. Rod was like a franchise player without the tag on him. He's just got no ego. He said he wanted to help Lovie get back to the Super Bowl. He didn't want to be a coordinator. He took a lot of hits in Detroit. He took every mortar shell in the chest. And he never blamed anyone else and that's why people love him. You're going to see a difference, a big difference.

"He called me at 9:30 [Saturday] morning and said I want to be in Chicago. Ted [Phillips] and I worked it out real quick.

"Being a head coach, you can't coach the line. He said, `I want to go back to what I do best.' That's what he is doing here. A lot of coaches can say they know this system, but none of them know it like him. Tampa called about him. It was tough with the back-and-forth but he made the right decision.''

Marinelli first visited the Bears Jan. 2 but contract talks did not start until this week. He is signed for three years, through 2011 like Smith. Now, the Bears must find a linebackers and secondary coach.

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17 Comments

All REAL Bear fans should be overjoyed about Coach Marinelli being with us, and helping get our defensive line back to it's rightful place:DOMINATING. This is just the first step, and now the Bears need to get their focus back on the buisness at hand. Adding a true run stuffer like Albert Haynesworth should be priority #1, unless we plan on bulking up either Harrison or Adams which could be good also. We obviously will add another edge rusher, probably in the draft, although if the Bears feel they can bulk up Adams and Harrison for the nose spot we may be able to shift the focus to and edge rusher in free agency, like Julius Peppers. The Bears will need to ultimatly decide on these 2 issues, but do not be mistaken in thinking that the nose tackle position and edge rusher are not our top defensive concern's because they are. The need for a true free safety should follow closely behind, and I think the Bears will look to nab a good one with the 17th or 18th pick in the first round, possibly USC's Taylor Mays. I'm not quite ready to throw Nathan Vashar to the curb at the corner spot, and he can still regain his form. I know some have been critical of Tillman, but most people would agree that his work ethic and physicality are what makes him a true Bear, and Charles is great player. We are not far away on defense, but without the right moves in the areas I spoke about, it could sure seem like it.

Great move!! Someone with experience that the players can look up to. Not some guy nobody has ever heard of!! I just have one question..What exactly does an assistant head coach do? Is he the head coach if Lovie calls in sick or gets injured? I hope that title gives him more power than the defense coordinator, especially on game day!! GO BEARS!! I hope Urlacher is home watching Ray Lewis!! That's how a MLB should play!!! Fast and furious with tons of passion!!!!

I don't see any fans breaking out the beer in rejoyce of this move. Its just the opposite. Lovie is the only one that is partying with a stoneface smile.

Lovie has got to go. Babich has got to go. heck, even Angelo has got to go.

Taking bets now...
Bet that Angelo doesn't draft a QB in the first 2 rounds.
Also bet that Lovie comes up with more excuses on why his team didn't make the playoffs in the next season.

WinOrGoHome, I second your comment about Urlacher. He could follow the example of a guy closer to home,too, one named Briggs.The defense has to improve, and that starts with pressure on the quarterback. Without that, any secondary will get burned all too often. I cringe every time I visualize the times the opposing quarterback waited and waited and waited while his receivers worked to get open. With the Bears, on the rare occasions when Orton was able to wait,he'd either not notice the open receiver or miss him by a poor throw anyway, so a quarterback who reads defenses and can throw accurately would also help. Didn't the Bears haver a chance for Curt Warner a few years ago? The Jets would probably have liked him this year too. He was in top form last night.

Good news! I would bet we will see improvement from Babich with the additional input that Marinelli brings. Now a serious evaluation of talent is needed.

Did Rod really developed this almighty defensive line that people speak of? Rod got to Tampa a year after Sapp had been there. Most of there pass rush came from Sapp who is considered one of the Best DT's to ever play the game. One problem he had was he never developed a defensive end his entire time there. He had a couple of guys have good single seasons but they were always next to Sapp playing RDE. He also Had Brad Culpepper, who while playing next to Sapp had career years. Guys like Marcus Jones would have Career years and then nothing. In 2001 the Bucs signed Rice to play RDE a Pro Bowl Calibur end because they were unable to develop one of there own. Rod had 10 years to develop an end and did not do it.

While Sapp is a lock for the Hall there is the Question of did he develop Sapp or was Sapp that good to begin with. More than anything I think he new how to motivate Sapp and got Sapp to grow up. However outside of Sapp he never developed anyone of note, Rice was real good before he got there. Anthony McFarland was suppose to be the next Sapp but never developed into it.

Also if you look at the draft picks that were put on that line while Rod was D-Line coach I think the line probably should have been better. The only guy who you can tie to Rod maybe developing is Sapp, but what about the other guys?

Warren Sapp DT 12 overall pick 1995
Simeon Rice DE 3rd overall pick 1996 Arizon
Regan Upshaw DE 12th overall pick 1996
Marcus Jones DE 22nd Overall Pick 1996
Greg Spires DE 3rd Round 83rd overall Pick 1998
Anthony McFarland DT 15th overall pick 1999

How come all these other high picks never really developed the way they were expected to if Rod is as good as people think. Sapp was awsome and may have been developed by Rod or may have just been that talented. Rice was great before he got to Tampa and looked even better next to Sapp, which he should. But the other guys for being such high draft picks were ok players and thats about it, none of them really developed into anything special or of note. Look at all those high draft picks. That should have been a great D-Line with those kinds of picks. Yet Rod never really developed anyone except maybe Sapp. If he is that good how come there is just Sapp? Does that mean maybe he didn't develop Sapp that much? Maybe, but for me if a coach only develops one player over 10 years then maybe he never developed him at all. He went too Detroit and sure, he got put in a bad situation but he was suppose to be a defensive coach and his defense finished dead last twice and I cannot think of a single guy on there line that was any good. I am not blaming him for the whole thing, but he did have his hand in it, he is not inoccent of that mess.

I hope he does well in Chicago but we don't have Sapp, and I don't think we will be making any major DE signings in the off season, so I think Rod may prove to be more bust than boom.

One other thing Creighton (and many others):

You LOSE a game ... especially playing cover-2 when the offense needs 15-25 yards and to get out of bounds.

Paris Hilton is LOOSE.

// Sorry, pet peeve (Rotsky'd)

Whoops, posted this in the wrong thread but ...

Creighton,

I have been asking people over and over on this board why Rod Marinelli is so great for Chicago. I keep hearing guys like Bill Holland call people "stupid" or other people refer to those like me as "morons" for not thinking this is the greatest thing since sliced bread.

In a related thread:
http://blogs.suntimes.com/bears/2009/01/hiring_marinelli_to_do_what_he.html

I posed that Marinelli is a product of the system. Since he left the Bucs have not dropped off. In 2006 they dropped to 17th in defense but were back to 2nd and 9th the last two years. I pointed to Rice\McFarland\Sapp\Hovan as guys they brought in via free agency and\or were 3rd, 12th, and 15th overall picks. I think you or I could "coach" a line with high-priced free agents and top 15 overall picks.

No one has yet to address HOW he was this great defensive line coach. More importantly - when he left "the system" - he had a Detroit defense that was 30th ranked, 32nd ranked, and 32nd ranked PLUS 0-16. This looks more and more like another Bob Babich decision to me.

Hey, if the guy can turn Mark Anderson back into the guy who won Defensive Rookie of the Year, I am ALL FOR IT! However, I have yet to see ONE GUY you can point at and say "Rod Marinelli made him what he is." Just show me ONE FARKING GUY and I'll take the moniker of "stupid" or "moron" for thinking this is like putting lipstick on a pig.

Coach there is something else a lot of people are missing. The Bucs couldn't win the Big dance, not even with Dungy, it was not until Gruden an offensive minded Coach came to Tampa that the Bucs won it all, now when I say offense I don't mean high powered but ball control. The defense still needed help from the offense, and Dungy didn't win it all until he got hooked up with an offense with nothing less than 6 Pro Bowlers and a Hall of fame QB in Manning, he installed his defense and then his team had balance enough to win it all. Lovie was hooked up with Martz and his defense was good his first year there but droped off in back to back years after that.

Now do you remember who talked up Lovie Smith? It was Martz a guy who wouldn't know a good defense if it came up and bit him. Who talked up Babich? Lovie. Who talked up Rod? Lovie and Angelo. How many teams went after Rod? 3. None of them were very good.

Point is Lovie and Rod are from the Dungy school and Dungy already showed Lovie who was the master in the Super Bowl. But Dungy needed a lot of help from that offense and Manning. Well we don't have that offense, we don't have Manning and we have a Poor man's Dungy. So with that Group can we really expect to win it all? Angelo and Lovie are trying to bring the Bucs back to the North/Central but it's the pre 2002 version, the one were you don't go out and bring in a bunch of talent for the offense. Plus no Dungy, no Kiffin, no Glazer family, no Sapp, no Keyshawn, Brooks, Rodne Barber, Rice, Dexter Jackson, McCardell, no Lynch, Dilger. In 2002 they had six guys who had been to the Pro Bowl on offense that they brought in and Alstott, and 7 regulars to the Pro Bowl on defense. More than half there starters had been in a pro bowl more than once. The Bears haven't drafted a pro bowl starter in 5 years, not sense Harris. Anyway in both cases of Tampa Bay and the Colts the Tampa two needed lots of offensive help to win it all. You know I think thats why I don't like Lovie and Angelo, to me they are just a pair of guys trying to imitate another teams success instead of having there own vision for a team they are trying to create a poor man's version of the 2002 Bucs instead of a Chicago Bears football team.

As for Rod Coach, outside of Sapp who I think was great to begin with, Rod has done nothing. Sapp liked him because they got along, and I think he did help motivate Sapp. But Sapp was born to play in the Tampa two he is the Prototype 3 tech DT for that system and no one has come close to being as good as he was in it. My opinion is Sapp liked him and said good things about his friend and Coach and Lovie said good things about his best friend, what was he going to say " no my best friend sucked as a D- Line coach?" As for Angelo he has struggled his whole career to find a Rush End and Rod has never developed one. So that tells me something right there.

That said Coach I hope we are both wrong and he is a great line coach. I don't see it, but I hope it. Who knows maybe Harris and Brown have 30 sacks between them in 09-10.

Creighton & DC of DC. (which I suppose is better than AC DC?)

I think you are answering your own questions. I took a look at Tampa's defensive bottom line:

Yr Def Rank (total) Passing Rushing
97 3 10 6
98 2 2 8
99 3 2 5
00 8 13 9
01 6 5 12
02 1 1 5
03 5 3 13
04 5 1 19

I don't know about you, but than looks to me like consistantly good defense. They average about 4th over an 8 year period. Y'all seem like smart guys, does that seem possible without consistently good line play?

And yet you have trouble naming great defensive linemen from Tampa?

So you have consistently good defense, which has to mean consistently good line play with relatively no-name players. What does that tell you?

Not to say im all happy over this move but,the cover-2 scheme is more about just rushing the front four.So with that said for you to put up good sack numbers you would have to a have a great line to play cover-2.More so than you would need in a blitz happy scheme like the one the eagles run.You talk about the line but look at the secondary and linebackers.This scheme is kind of like the 3-4 the guys up front dont get enough credit for helping the linebackers and the secondary make plays.SACK NUMBERS DONT ALWAYS ACCOUNT FOR PRESSURE THAT CAN MAKE QB'S THREW THE BALL EARLIER,OUT OF BOUNDS OR INTO A CB'S HANDS.so if the sacks numbers arent there in a good defense it usaully because they're make those things happen.

MsBearsFan: "So you have consistently good defense, which has to mean consistently good line play with relatively no-name players. What does that tell you?"

Yup, bunch of "no names" ... Warren Sapp (12th overall pick, future HOF), Simeon Rice(3rd overall pick, Defensive Rookie of the Year, mutliple time Pro-Bowler, brought in via free agency), Booger McFarland(15th overall pick), Chris Hovan(25th overall pick, brought in via free agency) ... Bunch of bums the lot of'em! What a GREAT coach who could take these virtual "no-names" and turn them into a great defense. A TRUE Helen-Keller-type miracle worker this one is!

// Sarcasm off

Creighton, Sapp is the one that credits Marinelli for developing him and making him a student of the game. He said he just did whatever he wanted before Marinelli got a hold of him. Rice did not play up to his potential until he played on Tampa's line. I'm sure it helped to have Sapp, but Arizona had a line packed with potential and nothing ever came of it. Besides those two probowlers the line played pretty well as a unit year in and year out. I think this is the boost the Bears need to get the Defense back into the top 10. Unless Babich is as bad as everyone thinks he is.

Coach you said it all.

Ms I think you miss the point of what me and coach were saying, he was given a ton of talent to work with but never developed anyone except maybe Sapp over ten years. Not to mention sense he has left the Bucs they are still a good defense. While he was the line coach I think a lot of credit should be given to Dungy and Kiffin, I don't think Rod had a lot to do with play calling. He also didn't have a lot to do with the other aspects of the defense which were very strong units as well, I am pretty sure he didn't develop Barber, Brooks and Lynch. There was a reason Tampa kept brining in help for there line. There was a reason they had to sign Rice and kept looking for a NT. The needed help on that DLine and they were not able to develop a lot of high draft picks that Rod was given. Like I said in ten years he never developed a DE, and McFarland was decent but he should have been decent or better, he was a top 15 pick. Again MsBear fan or anyone out there please if you can point out what exactly Rod did to develop all this talent he was given could you please show me and coach cause we are having problems finding it.

Dice what you say is true, but you will note the Bears were the second Blitz happiest team in the league last year and they had problems applying pressure with all that blitzing. No one is just talking about sacks but they have problems generating any pressure it's the reason they get killed in the pass and average QB's just pick them apart.

"Creighton, Sapp is the one that credits Marinelli for developing him and making him a student of the game. He said he just did whatever he wanted before Marinelli got a hold of him."

Yeah, this is the quote your referring to: "He's the one who made me believe that I could track down some of the great ones in the game and actually stand beside them," Sapp said as a member of the Oakland Raiders. "I always just played this position and did whatever I [wanted]. He's the one who opened my eyes to being a student of the game."

But how did he specifically make him become a better DT? To me it sounds more like he's giving Marinelli credit for helping him mature as a person.

"Rice did not play up to his potential until he played on Tampa's line." - GSH

Dude, what are you smoking? You think defensive Rookie of the Year honors is not "playing to one's potential." Yeah, ok.

GSH: "Rice did not play up to his potential until he played on Tampa's line."

GSH, that is completely FALSE.

Aside from being the Big Ten career leader in sacks, Rice played the first 5 years of his NFL career with the putrid Arizona Cardinals. He won Defensive Rookie of the Year in 1996. His finest year as a pro came in 1999 when he lead the league with 16.5 sacks and was named to his first Pro Bowl.

Why is everyone trying to re-write history to justify Marinelli as a great pickup?

Marrinelli is a good coach,Yes .But, if babich and turner and lovie are still here we will suck!U guys need to stop defending the bears whole organization they stink from the owners to staff.Rod will make a diff at d line coach but untill lovie stops calling game loosing plays at the end of games along with turner we will loose.instead of talking about marinelli we should b talking about firering babich and turner?they along with the QB coach and WR coach should GO!

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on January 11, 2009 1:39 AM.

Marinelli will not bring linebackers coach in package deal was the previous entry in this blog.

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