On the surface it may seem innocuous. Football coaches, like football players, are humans and they have real personal lives outside the game. Sometimes they need to put football aside to address things in their personal lives.
But things feel different in this case, since the Bears won’t say whether or not Williams is still the team’s defensive coordinator.
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“I don't have any update right now,” head coach Matt Eberflus said when asked about Williams’ job status.
Eberflus wouldn’t even say whether or not he’s spoken to Williams.
Last Sunday, Eberflus took over as the defensive playcaller in addition to performing his usual duties as head coach. Eberflus said he’s also continuing to split his time between the offense and defense fifty-fifty, despite the defense operating with no defensive coordinator. During the week he’s leaning on veteran position coaches like cornerbacks coach Joke Hoke, safeties coach Andre Curtis and linebackers coach Dave Borgonzi to shoulder more of the load.
“I think with the experience that we have on defense, I don’t think that’s an issue,” Eberflus said.
With Eberflus calling the plays, the Bears were a little bit more aggressive in terms of pressuring the quarterback. Some things improved, like holding the Buccaneers to just seven points in the second half. Others did not, like the inability to get off the field on third down.
If Williams does not return to the team before this Sunday’s game against the Chiefs, Eberflus will call the defense again.