Meet Brandon Staley, the new Outside Linebackers (OLB) Coach.
First, Caplan is nice about it, but let’s not mince words. Clint Hurtt’s contract was not renewed, and his surname is a sad reminder of the unfulfilled promise of last year’s oft-injured OLBs.
So how did Staley – Decatur Staleys! – end up in Chicago? That’s a very interesting story.
Staley could go call plays in the NFL tomorrow
In 2016, he was the Defensive Coordinator (DC) of the DIII John Carroll Blue Streaks, where his battles with cancer helped shape him into an inspirational leader who was named DIII Coordinator of the year.
From there, Head Coach Tom Arth got a job at UT-Chattanooga, and along followed Staley as the DC. Based upon Arth’s glowing recommendation, Staley’s production while at John Carroll, and a speculative connection to alum Don Shula via his grandson, Staley quickly jumped from the Mocking Birds to the Bears when given the offer.
While at John Carroll, Staley’s defense was dominating.
In 14 games his defense gave up per game averages of 12.6 points, 78.6 rushing yards, 139.7 passing yards, and 218 total yards. And that’s including 474 yards to UW-Oshkosh, a team that narrowly lost 10-7 in the DIII Championship game. In one incredible game against Wilmington, his defense allowed -30 yards rushing!
Fellow Bears’ fans, please allow yourself a moment to reminisce about the -19 total yards Chicago held New England to in Super Bowl XX.
While Staley’s unit didn’t create a lot of turnovers (14 FF & 15 INT), they did, however, know how to get sacks. In the 14 games, his team averaged over three sacks per game. In one three-game stretch, opposing QBs were taken to the ground a staggering 21 times, with one of those games against semi-finalist Mount Union.
Good news, Bears’ fans, Daley’s best player was an All-Ohio Athletic Conference first team, Gene Slaughter Most Outstanding Linebacker, and North Region Defensive Player of the Year… OLB Mason McKenrick.
Let’s hope Leonard Floyd racks up post-season awards like McKenrick did.