John Fox Appears to be a Lame Duck Coach

Some news was broken today by Chris Mortensen. If it’s true, John Fox appears to be entering his final season in Chicago.

When John Fox and Ryan Pace were hired two years ago everyone applauded the move. It was a great combination of the young, hotshot GM and the wise, veteran coach. The team would be unstoppable. But clearly that relationship isn’t quite working out.

There have been stories in the past that Fox isn’t always seeing eye-to-eye with everyone in the organization. If the latest report is true, not only is that the case, but it’s also hard to imagine John Fox as the Bears’ head coach in 2018.

Chris Mortensen of ESPN dropped a pretty significant story Friday afternoon.

This is incredible and borderline ridiculous. Fox is the head coach of the team. He should absolutely have input and be a part of major decisions within the organization. The number three overall pick is one of the biggest decisions the franchise has had to make in a long time and the head coach wasn’t kept in the loop?

Sure, that final decision as to what player will be selected is up to the GM and it’s the coach’s job to coach him. But when Fox isn’t consulted, that’s telling.

it would appear that John Fox isn’t going to be a part of this organization’s future. If he was, he would be a part of his decision. Fox has two years left on his contract and teams almost never keep a lame duck coach for the final year of their contract. Teams want stability. If they know the coach is going to be a part of the organization, they usually extend them with a year remaining on their original deal. If they don’t feel the coach is the right fit, the firing is made with a year left on the deal. Being Fox has two years left but now already being held out of major decisions, that could only mean one thing- Fox will be gone in January.

Sure, the Bears could be a surprise team and go 10-6 and the team will be forced to retain Fox, but most likely, as the rebuild continues, you should expect another 6-10 or 5-11 type season and Fox will be gone.

If the front office has already made that decision then why is Fox still the coach you ask? That answer is simple- money.

As an organization, the Bears almost never fire a coach with two years left on his contract. The Bears will suck it up and pay two head coaches for one year but they almost never do it with two. After the 2014 season, the Bears fired Marc Trestman with two years left on his deal. So since Fox has been aboard, they have been paying two coaches. Trestman is now off the books and this organization was not about to continue to pay two head coaches for another two years.

The McCaskeys know this is a rebuild and know 2017 is going to be another long season, so there was no way they were going to bring in a new coach so they could lose games while paying two head coaches.

If you want to call the Bears cheap, go ahead, but it’s not your millions so it’s hard to argue the point. Whether the coach this year would have been John Fox, Vic Fangio or Josh McDaniels, the Bears are almost certainly going to lose more games than they will win.

Today’s “Mort Bomb” was a big one. John Fox is no longer a part of this organization’s decision-making process. He isn’t seen as part of their future. He’s almost certainly gone in a year. We knew the news coming out of this draft would be crucial for the direction of the future of the Bears and less than 24 hours in, that is certainly the case.



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