The Bears have hired Jeremy Bates to be their new quarterbacks coach. He replaces Shane Day, who was not retained after the 2011 season.
Bates has eight years of coaching experience and his last job was as the Seahawks' offensive coordinator during the 2010 season. He was fired after that season. Prior to that, he had been an assistant head coach/quarterbacks at USC for one year. He was an assistant with the Buccaneers (2002-03, offensive quality control; 2004, assistant quarterbacks) and Jets (2005, quarterbacks) before joining the Broncos before the 2006 season.
During his three seasons in Denver, Bates worked extensively with QB Jay Cutler, who was traded to the Bears before the 2009 season. The pairing had great success between 2006-08, Cutler's first three seasons in the NFL, and their relationship is likely a reason Chicago is bringing Bates aboard this season.
The way we see it
This hire probably sits well with Cutler, but Bates, whose stock was rising a few years ago, has seen his profile diminish after one-year stints with USC and the Seahawks before spending last season out of coaching.
The Bears' first choice for the job was former Buccaneers offensive coordinator Greg Olson, who ended up turning down the Bears to become the Jaguars' assistant head coach/quarterbacks last month.
Bates will not be calling plays — offensive coordinator Mike Tice will handle those duties — but head coach Lovie Smith said after hiring Tice that the Bears would hire "a passing coordinator to work with our quarterbacks and an offensive line coach."
If Bates will indeed coordinate the passing game, it's not part of his official title.