CHICAGO, Jan. 17 (UPI) -- The Chicago Bears declined a request for Assistant Coach John Hoke to interview for a vacant position with the Minnesota Vikings, officials say.
Monday's declined request marks the second consecutive off-season that an assistant coach was barred by the team from interviewing with other teams for advancement.
Hoke who is the Bears' defensive backs coach was to be interviewed for a position as the Vikings' defensive coordinator.
The Chicago Tribune reports that the decision may be because the Vikings are NFC rivals; however, there is no clear reason why offensive line coach Mike Tice was prevented from interviewing with the Titans to become their offensive coordinator last February.
Hoke is currently under a two-year contract with the Bears. The only time a team is required to grant permission for assistants who are under contract to interview with other teams is for head coaching positions. Interviews for other types of positions are at the discretion of team officials.