Sources: Neither John Fox nor Vic Fangio in Chicago Bears’ future plans
There has been a lot of talk around Chicago about the possibility of firing head coach John Fox prior to the end of the 2017 season and elevating defensive coordinator Vic Fangio to interim head coach for the rest of the season if the decision has already been made that Fox will not be back in 2018.
Fangio is well respected in league circles for his work coordinating the defenses of the San Francisco 49ers and Bears, but he is still somewhat unknown as a head-coaching prospect, having received minimal interest to date. Fangio is particularly popular in Chicago right now, and yet it appears unlikely he would return as the defensive coordinator should he be passed over for the head job.
The interim head coach solution is viewed by some of our sources around the league as a great way to let Fangio audition for the job and give general manager Ryan Pace an idea of what he has in house before shopping outside the organization for his next head coach should Fox be terminated.
However, according to several sources close to the situation, Fangio being named an interim head coach won’t happen. The reason that won’t happen, we’re hearing, is that the Bears front office already has a list of names to interview as potential head coach candidates going forward and Fangio’s name isn’t on it.
If Fangio were to have success for a few games as in interim head coach, it could create significant pressure on Pace to give Fangio the job on a permanent basis even if he still isn’t convinced Fangio’s the right guy for the job.
According to our sources, Pace already has plans for change in the very near future and auditioning Fangio could possibly interfere with those plans a lot more than help them. While there is virtually no chance that Fangio will return as defensive coordinator with whomever is named the next Bears head coach, we’re hearing that’s a loss Pace is already preparing for.