How Much Longer Will the Bears Keep Matt Nagy Employed?

Nick Foles, Matt Nagy
Matt Nagy and Nick Foles | Joe Scarnici/Getty Images

The Chicago Bears are 5-4 and are coming off yet another disappointing loss, this time to the Tennessee Titans. The final score of 24-17 indicates a closer game than it actually was. It was the team's third straight loss after they somehow started the year 5-1. The Bears finally benched Mitchell Trubisky in favor of Nick Foles, who has not been much better. Another losing season feels inevitable, and it's fair to wonder just how much longer head coach Matt Nagy will keep his job.

It feels like ages ago at this point, but Nagy's first year with the Bears in 2018 was a resounding success. He proved himself to be the creative playcaller we all thought he was as the Bears rode a clever offense and absurd defense to the playoffs. Then the double-doink happened, the Bears lost to the Philadelphia Eagles in the divisional round of the playoffs, and it's been all downhill from there.

It's not Nagy's fault that the Bears picked the wrong quarterback in the 2017 NFL Draft. But he was supposed to be able to make up for Trubisky's flaws enough to keep the Bears winning games. Nagy has failed in that effort since the devastating playoff loss to the Eagles. In 2019, Trubisky threw for 3,138 yards and only 17 touchdowns with 10 interceptions and completed 63 percent of his passes. The Bears won eight games. Trubisky lasted three games this season before Foles took over and it was more of the same; he has thrown six touchdowns and three picks in his three starts, with two of those coming against bad defenses in Atlanta and Detroit.

The Bears' offense has not drastically improved with the more accurate Foles under center, either. In the six games the Super Bowl winning-QB has played, Chicago has scored 30 points only once. That came in the Falcons game when Foles relieved Trubisky at halftime. Otherwise, the Bears have yet to top 23 points. They currently rank 29th in the NFL in total offense, 28th in scoring, and last in rushing. This continues a trend from 2019, when the Bears ended the season ranked 29th in yards per game, 27th in rushing yards per game, and 29th in points per game.

Only so much of this can fall on the shoulders of Trubisky. Nagy looked like another Sean McVay in his first year at the helm, but the next season and a half's worth of numbers suggest that year was the exception rather than the rule. Great playcallers put players in a position to succeed and can engineer good looks through scheme, regardless of the pieces operating the system. Nagy has failed to do either with any sort of consistency since 2018.

Nagy isn't working with a great quarterback room, but the blame has to fall eventually, and a lack of playmakers at skill positions can only go so far as an excuse. The Bears punted five times in the first half on Sunday. There were 12 minutes left in the game when they finally scored their first offensive points of the day. Tennessee's defense is good, but not that good. The offense in Chicago has been an eyesore for nearly a full year and a half now. Something has to change. The clock should be ticking on Nagy's time as head coach.