The Bears are expanding sets on both sides of the ball to start off spring practice, but both offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave and defensive coordinator Peter Sirmon appear satisfied with the amount of progress they’ve made in the first couple days of spring practice.
“We always take our lumps from time to time,” said Musgrave. He mentioned that the playbook will utilize its full potential this year with a full offseason under the players’ belts.
As concurrent quarterbacks coach, Musgrave is also pleased with their individual development and says that all the QBs are “battling”, trying to get better.
Musgrave and new TE coach Geep Chryst have crossed paths in the NFL, with Chryst serving as Musgrave’s TE coach on the Broncos during the 2017-2018 seasons. It’s the Princeton education and NFL experience of Chryst that drew Musgrave’s attention when filling in the position with Musgrave saying “I got a lot smarter as a coach the day we hired Geep.”
Chryst, who helped found a Silicon Valley company focused on game analytics, will also enhance the Bears’ usage of data, but Musgrave emphasized that the team already is “an aggressive outlet” on offense.
Although the backup QB position remains unclear, Musgrave was hesitant to talk about the order they practice in and says “everybody’s getting to play.” He doesn’t anticipate naming one until fall camp. This ambiguity also surrounds the RB position as Musgrave wants to utilize all of the RBs on the team during games.
Similarly, Sirmon is apparently taking a more ambiguous approach to linebackers both inside and outside. He praised Trey Paster’s acceptance of transitioning to ILB and said that they will “explore a couple different options” in terms of Kuony Deng’s placement on the field though packages are “yet to be determined.”
What’s struck Sirmon the most over the first couple practices has been the eagerness to get better, particularly from the super-senior 6th year players who could’ve easily relaxed.
Sirmon also laughed when saying that the current DBs coach was bringing a certain perspective for both the players and the coaching staff that wasn’t present before. He hopes that this DBs coach can “coach up to” the standard expected of him while also managing his duties as head coach.
The Bears will move into full pads in Saturday’s practice.