Coaches

Jon Hoke
Defensive Backs

Biography

Jon Hoke, in his sixth season as Chicago’s defensive backs coach, was hired on January 13, 2009.

Under Hoke’s tutelage, cornerbacks Tim Jennings and Charles Tillman have been named to a total of four Pro Bowls over the last three seasons. Jennings has made two-straight Pro Bowls (following the 2012 and 2013 seasons) and ranks second in the NFL since 2012 with 13 interceptions. Tillman made two-straight Pro Bowls after the 2011 and 2012 seasons and has 16 interceptions, six interception return touchdowns and 23 forced fumbles.

Jon Hoke, in his sixth season as Chicago’s defensive backs coach, was hired on January 13, 2009.

Under Hoke’s tutelage, cornerbacks Tim Jennings and Charles Tillman have been named to a total of four Pro Bowls over the last three seasons. Jennings has made two-straight Pro Bowls (following the 2012 and 2013 seasons) and ranks second in the NFL since 2012 with 13 interceptions. Tillman made two-straight Pro Bowls after the 2011 and 2012 seasons and has 16 interceptions, six interception return touchdowns and 23 forced fumbles.

Since Hoke joined the Bears in 2009, Chicago ranks third in the NFL in interceptions (97), second in interception return yards (1,569) and leads the league with 19 interception return touchdowns. The Bears defensive backs have helped hold opposing quarterbacks to an 80.4 passer rating during that time, 10th lowest in the NFL.

Last season, Chicago tied for eighth in the NFL with 19 interceptions. Jennings was named to the Pro Bowl after his eight combined interceptions (four), forced fumbles (three) and opponent fumble recoveries (one) were fourth most in the NFL and tied for first among cornerbacks. In eight games last season, Tillman had three interceptions and three forced fumbles.  

Under Hoke’s guidance in 2012, Jennings and Charles Tillman were both named as Pro Bowl starters, the first cornerback tandem to both be named Pro Bowl starters since Hanford Dixon and Frank Minnifield of the Cleveland Browns in 1988. Jennings led the NFL with nine interceptions in 2012, tied for second-most in Bears single-season history. Tillman became the first cornerback to be selected to back-to-back Pro Bowls in Bears history and the team's first defensive back since safety Mark Carrier in 1990-91. In 2012, Tillman led the NFL with a career-high 10 forced fumbles and was named All-Pro by the Associated Press.

In 2011, Hoke’s coaching helped Tillman, a nine-year veteran at the time, was named to his first career Pro Bowl.

In 2010, safety Chris Harris, who is now a defensive quality control coach for Chicago, was named second-team All-Pro by the Associated Press after recording five interceptions. Tillman returned his five interceptions in 2010 127 yards, third most in the NFL. Tillman’s 25.4 yards per return was third highest in the NFL.

In 2009, second-year cornerback Zackary Bowman ranked tied for fifth in the NFL with six interceptions, the most by a Bears corner since Nathan Vasher had eight in 2006. Tillman ranked second in the NFL in 2009 with six forced fumbles, the most among defensive backs.

Prior to his time in Chicago, the 31-year coaching veteran spent the previous seven seasons (2002-08) as the Houston Texans defensive backs coach after spending three seasons (1999-2001) at the University of Florida as the Gators defensive coordinator/secondary coach. He added the title of assistant head coach in his final two seasons (2000-01) at Florida.

During his time with the Texans, Houston defensive backs accounted for 82.8 percent (72 of 87) of the teams’ interceptions, seventh-highest percentage in the NFL during that span and third-highest in the AFC. In 2002, he coached CB Aaron Glenn to the Pro Bowl.

Prior to his time in Gainesville, Hoke tutored the defensive backs at Missouri for five seasons (1994-98) after spending five years in the same capacity at Kent State (1989-93), adding the title of defensive coordinator in his final season with the Golden Flashes. 

Hoke started coaching at Bowling Green in 1983 as the Falcons’ secondary/special teams coach. He spent four seasons in Bowling Green before coaching the defensive backs/special teams at San Diego State from 1987-88.

A four-year letterman at Ball State (1976-79), Hoke earned all-MAC honors as a defensive back. He earned a bachelor’s degree in physical education. Hoke played 11 games for the Chicago Bears in 1980, recording seven tackles.

A native of Kettering, Ohio, Hoke and his wife, Jody, have four children: Mallory, Kyle and twins Kendall and Carly.

Recent Articles

Recent Videos

  • Inside Rookie Minicamp: Episode 5

    Posted Jun 25, 2014

    Head coach Marc Trestman and defensive coordinator Mel Tucker were mic'd up for the final day of practice and two players are invited to join the Bears on the final episode of Inside Rookie Minicamp.

  • Inside Rookie Minicamp: Episode 2

    Posted Jun 16, 2014

    The rookies hit the practice field for the first time and coaches Jon Hoke and Chris Harris have their first opportunity to work with defensive backs Kyle Fuller and Brock Vereen on episode two of Inside Rookie Minicamp.

  • Tillman receives Piccolo award

    Posted Apr 23, 2013

    Defensive back coach Jon Hoke introduces CB Charles Tillman as a Veteran Piccolo award winner.

  • Bears-Colts Sights and Sounds

    Posted Sep 10, 2012

    Go behind the scenes as the Bears take on the Colts in the season opener.