Following the Denver Broncos’ loss to the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC divisional playoff round on Sunday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Monday that the Broncos and head coach John Fox have mutually agreed to part ways.
And with that revelation, Fox has officially become my favorite candidate to replace Marc Trestman as Bears head coach.
After two rocky years under Trestman’s rule, the Bears are seeking a more authoritative coach, one who commands the respect of his team’s locker room. Fox is one of the most respected coaches in the NFL right now and has a proven track record of success.
Fox took over the Carolina Panthers in 2002 and led them to a Super Bowl berth the next season, where they lost a close one, 32-29, to a juggernaut New England Patriots team.
Chicagoans will remember Fox’s Panthers defeating the Bears in the 2005 playoffs at Soldier Field.
While the Panthers only finished 2-14 the season that they and Fox parted ways, Fox’s teams are widely known to be competitive every Sunday, every year.
As coach of the Broncos for the past four seasons, Fox compiled a 46-18 regular season record. He has a career 119-89 regular season record in 13 seasons as a head coach, making the playoffs 7 times and winning 6 division titles. And while Fox had the benefit of working with the greatest quarterback of all time, Peyton Manning, while in Denver, he made a winner out of Jake Delhomme while in Carolina. That alone is an impressive accomplishment.
Fox will certainly be in high demand among those teams still looking for a head coach and he will probably command a high salary. But I don’t expect money will be an issue for a Bears organization desperate to regain stability and credibility.
If I were new general manager Ryan Pace, I would be on the phone with Fox and/or his agent this moment. And if I were George McCaskey, I would have my pocketbook open and ready to offer whatever Fox asked for.