Alan Williams steps down from his role after less than two years
The Chicago Bears announced on Wednesday that their defensive coordinator Alan Williams has resigned from his position, citing personal reasons. Williams, who joined the team in February 2022, has been away from the team since last week and does not have a timetable for his return.
“I am taking a step back to take care of my health and family. I appreciate the opportunity to work with the Chicago Bears, a storied NFL franchise with a rich history,” Williams said in a statement. “I value the NFL shield and all that it stands for, and after taking some time to address my health, I plan to come back and coach again,” he added.
Williams, 53, was hired by the Bears after serving as the defensive backs coach for the Detroit Lions for four seasons. He previously worked as the defensive coordinator for the Minnesota Vikings from 2012 to 2013 and as the defensive backs coach for the Indianapolis Colts from 2002 to 2011.
Matt Eberflus takes over defensive play-calling duties
In Williams’ absence, head coach Matt Eberflus will assume the role of defensive play-caller for the Bears, starting from last Sunday’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Eberflus, who was hired as the head coach in January 2022, has previous experience as a defensive coordinator for the Colts from 2018 to 2021 and as a linebackers coach for the Cowboys from 2011 to 2017.
Eberflus said he has the support of the other defensive coaches, such as safeties coach Andre Curtis, cornerbacks coach/passing game coordinator Jon Hoke, linebackers coach Dave Borgonzi, and assistant defensive backs coach David Overstreet. “We have great experience. Guys that have been in our system. All those guys are working diligently, so we’re prepared and ready to go,” Eberflus said, according to ESPN.
Eberflus also said he has been in constant communication with Williams and respects his decision to take care of his personal matters. “He’s a great friend, a great coach, a great person. We wish him nothing but the best. We’re here to support him in any way we can,” Eberflus said.
Bears’ defense struggles in the first two games
The Bears’ defense, which was expected to be one of the strengths of the team, has not performed well in the first two games of the season. The Bears are currently 0-2 and rank 28th in the league in points allowed per game (29.5), 25th in yards allowed per game (386.5), and 31st in sacks (1).
The Bears lost to the Los Angeles Rams 34-14 in the season opener, allowing Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford to throw for 321 yards and three touchdowns. The Bears also gave up 156 rushing yards and two touchdowns to the Rams’ running backs.
The Bears fared no better against the Buccaneers, losing 27-17 in Week 2. The Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady threw for 276 yards and three touchdowns, while the Buccaneers’ defense sacked Bears rookie quarterback Justin Fields nine times and forced two turnovers.
The Bears will face another tough challenge on Sunday, when they host the Kansas City Chiefs, who are led by star quarterback Patrick Mahomes and have one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL. The Bears will need to improve their defensive performance and find a way to slow down the Chiefs’ attack.