The Chicago Bears have officially announced the hiring of Jeremy Bates as their new quarterbacks coach. Although there has been talk about the position being a hybrid "passing game coordinator" job as well, the official press release from the team makes no mention of any additional titles or duties for Bates. He worked as the position coach for Jay Cutler in Denver prior to the trade that brought the quarterback to Chicago in April of 2009, helping Cutler to set Denver Broncos passing records with 384 completions, 616 attempts, 4,526 yards and eight 300-yard games on his way to Pro Bowl honors in 2008.
In three seasons working together, Cutler completed 62.5 percent of his passes for 9,024 yards, tossed 17 more touchdowns than interceptions (54-37) and produced an 87.1 passer rating. For head coach Lovie Smith, the decision to hire Bates became an easy one over time, as he explained to ChicagoBears.com:
"I did a lot of research and I think Jeremy is a perfect fit," Smith said. "Did we look at other guys? Yes, we did. Every time we have an opening, I look at everybody available. I even waited to see who would be available so I could see what the pool really looked like.
"Even though we had only brought in one guy (former Buccaneers offensive coordinator Greg Olson), I had been talking to a lot of guys. But in the end, it was Jeremy by a landslide."
Bates brings eight years of NFL coaching experience. He broke into the league as an offensive assistant with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, then worked under that title for one-year stints with the New York Jets and University of Southern California Trojans. Aside from his three-years as QBs coach in Denver, Bates also served as offensive coordinator for the Seattle Seahawks in 2010 before being fired after the team lost to the Bears in the NFC Divisional Playoffs.
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