The latest coaching rumor has University of Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh considering a move to become the Chicago Bears head coach. Should we believe those rumors?
With the Chicago Bears finalizing another disappointing season, rumors about impending changes swirl around the team. It appears that head coach Matt Nagy will be one of the victims of Black Monday, the day after the regular season ends and teams announce the firings of their head coaches.
The Bears haven’t made any official announcements on Nagy but reports indicate that they will move on from him after the season ends this Sunday. That means there will be a lot of chatter about his replacement.
There have already been a number of candidates linked to the Bears’ job. Coaches like Byron Leftwich, Brian Daboll, Kellen Moore, Pat Fitzgerald, and Leslie Frazier have all been mentioned as candidates.
You can now add University of Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh to the mix.
Bruce Feldman of The Athletic recently reported that Harbaugh might be tempted to leave the Wolverines to get back to the NFL. He was the San Francisco 49ers head coach from 2011 to 2014. He led them to the Super Bowl in the 2012 season and went back to the NFC Championship game in 2013 but fell to the Seattle Seahawks. Overall, he had a 44-19-1 record with San Francisco.
Feldman wrote that there are two teams Harbaugh would definitely be interested in — the Las Vegas Raiders and the Chicago Bears. He started his coaching career with the Raiders and is friends with Raiders owner Mark Davis.
Of course, his ties with the Bears go with his time as a player. He was the Bears’ first-round pick in 1987 and played in Chicago until 1993. I’m sure there would be interest on both sides in having a reunion. Chairman of the Board George McCaskey would love to have someone who really loves the franchise and come in to turn things around.
Both the Raiders and the Bears have a good situation at quarterback. Las Vegas has Derek Carr who is among the league leaders in passing yards. The Bears have Justin Fields a player most people believe can finally end the team’s search for a franchise quarterback.
Between the two quarterbacks, Harbaugh might want to prefer the young one. He can mold Fields to be the player he needs to succeed. Being a first-round quarterback like Fields, Harbaugh can relate to Fields. Harbaugh would love the challenge of molding Fields and if it works he knows what awaits him in Chicago. The fans love their winners and treat them like royalty, and Harbaugh would just soak it in.
Should we believe Jim Harbaugh would come to the Chicago Bears?
Despite Feldman having sources who confirm his story, should we still believe the report? This could also be a negotiating ploy by the Harbaugh camp.
A year ago, Harbaugh accepted a contract extension through 2025 but it cut his salary. In 2020, he made $8 million. In 2021, his salary was cut to $4 million. After going 12-2, winning the Big Ten, and making it to the College Football Playoffs, he might want to recoup some of that money while he is hot. No one seemed to want him after last season. Now he has the NFL knocking at his door. He could milk that for a better deal with Michigan.
Another thing to keep in mind with Harbaugh is his fiery ways. He hasn’t coached anywhere for more than four years. He just finished his seventh year with Michigan.
Harbaugh tends to wear on teams. Despite back-to-back NFC Championship appearances in 2012-2013, the Niners’ owners were done with him and it ended the next season.
Would the Chicago Bears take a chance that they’ll become winners with Harbaugh but then have to part ways with him when he burns more bridges? Stay tuned and we’ll soon find out.