NFC Notes: Justin Fields, Bears, Lions, Vikings, Jim Harbaugh

Bears

Bears HC Matt Eberflus said the team’s plan on offense will be to build around QB Justin Fields and emphasize what he does well on offense, while minimizing things that don’t fit his skillset. 

Building the offense around him and his strengths,” Eberflus said, via ESPN. “What does that look like? I don’t know right now. We have to look at him. We have to evaluate him. We have to see where his skill set is. And then see his camera. How does he see the game? How fast does he process? How fast does he do things and how can we stretch him as we go?

Fields is excited that the team hired a coach with a defensive background, as that will give him insight on offense as to what the opposing team is trying to throw at him.

I’m very excited,” Fields said. “Having a defensive head coach, I feel like there are some positives to that. I feel like being on the offense, you kind of know what the defense is doing, but you don’t know what they’re fully doing…When you have a defensive head coach, he’s able to explain to you what their jobs are, what their certain assignments are in a certain coverage, so I think that’s one plus on having a defensive head coach.

Eberflus said that he’s looking for athleticism and the ability to create chunk plays when discussing roster construction.

Explosive athletic ability is one of the traits we are looking for,” Eberflus said. “That equals chunk plays on offense and it equals stopping chunk plays on defense. If you want to score points, you have to get chunk plays and big plays. That’s how you score.

Lions

Lions HC Dan Campbell told the media he is nervous about losing DC Aaron Glenn to a head coaching position around the league while saying he would be a great fit with the Saints.

“Well, he’d be a great fit (with the Saints),” Campbell said Tuesday, via DetroitLions.com. “That’s why I’m nervous. Honestly, AG would be a great fit for just about anybody. That’s how much I think of him and know where he’s going. I know that’s real, that’s out there, they have a good feel of AG. AG has a great feel of that organization.”

Glenn himself is less nervous and weighed in saying that he is committed to the Lions until his time comes.

“Whenever my time (to be a head coach) comes, it comes,” Glenn said. “I think we all know that at some time in my career that’s what I want to do. But I said this before and I’ll say it again, I want to be the best defensive coordinator the Detroit Lions ever had. Also, I look forward to that day I become a head coach. The interviews are coming around and I’m enjoying those things, they are fun.”

Vikings

  • ESPN’s Courtney Cronin reports Michigan HC Jim Harbaugh went into his HC interview with the Vikings believing he had the job, while the Vikings treated the interview like a typical HC interview.
  • Cronin also reports that there is no ill will between Harbaugh and the Vikings after the interview.
  • The Athletic’s Chad Graff notes the Vikings asked all their GM candidates to provide three coaches they would prefer to work with. Their eventual hire, Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, listed Rams OC Kevin O’Connell, Giants DC Patrick Graham and Harbaugh. 
  • Graff adds O’Connell, who is expected to become the next head coach after the Super Bowl, blew the Vikings away in their interview on Monday with his knowledge of the roster and his nuanced plan for QB Kirk Cousins, who he also coached in Washington. 
  • Like Cronin, Graff got the sense that Harbaugh was a lot more confident about getting the job than the Vikings were about giving it to him entering the interview on Wednesday. Still, he says things went well in the early going with the interview and there were people in the building who thought a hire might actually happen. 
  • However, Graff says the tenor of things shifted at about 3 p.m. for reasons that aren’t exactly clear. He mentions the Vikings did have hard questions they wanted cleared up about how things ended for Harbaugh in San Francisco and his reputation for being hard to work with. 
  • There was never a contract offer on the table for Harbaugh from the Vikings, per Graff. 
  • Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press received a text from Harbaugh after his interview with the Vikings: β€œThe Wilf family and organization are first class all the way and in every way and Kwesi (Adofo-Mensah) is a shining star! The team is poised for greatness.”

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