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Bears tab Rowe as defensive backs coach


The Bears on Friday hired James Rowe as their defensive backs coach.

Rowe served as Colts cornerbacks coach in 2021. He's the third assistant that new Bears coach Matt Eberflus has added to his staff from the defense he coordinated in Indianapolis. The others are defensive coordinator Alan Williams and linebackers coach Dave Borgonzi.

In 2021, the Colts ranked second in the NFL with 33 takeaways and tied for third with 19 interceptions. Indianapolis cornerback Kenny Moore II, who entered the league as an undrafted free agent in 2007, was selected to the Pro Bowl in 2021 after tying career highs with four interceptions and 13 pass breakups and recording a career-best 102 tackles.

Before joining the Colts, Rowe served as cornerbacks coach at Appalachian State in 2020. The Mountaineers were the only FBS team to prevent opponents from completing fewer than 50 percent of their passes and led the nation with 74 pass breakups.

Rowe initially entered the NFL as an assistant defensive backs coach with Washington from 2017-19.

The Florida native started his coaching career as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in his home state at Cocoa High School from 2007-10.

He spent the next six seasons coaching at the collegiate level, working at Bethel University in McKenzie, Tenn., as a graduate assistant (2011); at Jacksonville as a graduate assistant and cornerbacks coach (2012), receivers coach (2013) and defensive coordinator (2014); at Florida as a defensive graduate assistant (2015); and at Valdosta State as defensive coordinator (2016).

At Valdosta State, Rowe coached Moore—the Colts cornerback—who earned first-team All-America honors after registering five interceptions. As a team, the Blazers defense led Division II with 27 interceptions.

Rowe played baseball at South Florida, earning three letters from 2005-07 and graduating with a degree in business administration in 2009.

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