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Bears hire Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus as head coach

Jan. 27 (UPI) -- The Chicago Bears hired Indianapolis Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus as their new head coach, the team announced Thursday.

The 51-year-old Eberflus has three decades of coaching experience -- 13 in the NFL and 17 at the college level. He spent the past four seasons as the Colts' defensive coordinator.

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"I couldn't be more excited to have Matt become the next head coach of the Chicago Bears," Ryan Poles, who was hired to be the franchise's general manager earlier this week, said in a statement. "His experience, passion, character and attention to detail made him the right man for both the job and the culture we intend to establish here at Halas Hall.

"Throughout the search, Matt impressed me when detailing his vision and plan for our team. We look forward to getting to work and assembling a top-notch staff and roster that will help us consistently compete for championships."

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Eberflus also was considered a candidate for the Jacksonville Jaguars' head-coaching opening. He will join Poles in taking over a Bears team that posted a 6-11 record in 2021 under former coach Matt Nagy and missed the postseason for the ninth time in the past 11 seasons.

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In addition to Eberflus, the Bears interviewed Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn and former Detroit Lions and Colts head coach Jim Caldwell for their coaching vacancy.

"I would like to thank Ryan and the McCaskey family for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to lead the Chicago Bears, one of the most storied franchises in all of sports in one of the greatest cities in the world," Eberflus said.

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"I am truly humbled and honored to be named your head coach and together we will do everything in our power to bring a Super Bowl championship back to Chicago."

Over the past four seasons under Eberflus, the Colts' defense finished inside the top 10 in scoring three times, including being tied for ninth this past season at 21.5 points allowed per game.

Eberflus inherits a Bears club that ranked sixth in the league in total defense last season. However, the team struggled offensively and experienced instability at the quarterback position.

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Chicago made two playoff appearances in its four years under Nagy, but the franchise last won a postseason game in 2010. The Bears parted ways with Nagy earlier this month.

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