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John Fox out as Bears head coach

Bears general manager Ryan Pace informed John Fox early Monday morning that he will not return as head coach in 2018.


John Fox has been let go after three seasons as Head Coach of the Bears.

Fox compiled a 14-34 record in three seasons with the Bears, a .292 winning percentage that is the second worst in franchise history behind only Abe Gibron's .268 percentage (11-30-1 from 1972-74).

"This is a difficult day," Pace said Monday afternoon during a press conference at Halas Hall. "I have the utmost respect for coach Fox. He's a great friend and I want to thank him for the last three years as our head coach.

"He poured everything he had into the Bears, and he's been a tremendous force in changing the culture and the mentality in this building. He helped set the foundation for this organization to go to new heights. However, in the end, where we stand today, the results on the field over the last three seasons simply [weren't] good enough."

A veteran coach who had guided both the Panthers and Broncos to the Super Bowl, Fox restored credibility with the Bears when he was hired on Jan. 16, 2015 after two dysfunctional seasons under Marc Trestman.

But Fox was unable to turn the Bears around, becoming the first head coach to post three straight double-digit losing seasons with records of 6-10, 3-13 and 5-11.

The Bears struggled against NFC North opponents during his tenure, registering identical 1-5 marks versus the Packers, Lions and Vikings—and failing to win a division game in 2017 for the first time since 1969.

Though the Bears lost seven of their final nine games this year, Pace revealed that he did not consider making a coaching change during the season.

"Our guys were playing hard, competing, and that's a credit to coach Fox and what he's instilled," Pace said, "so that was never a consideration.

"This wasn't a rushed decision. I understand this is a critical decision that's going to dictate our future success. At the end of the day, it's results on the field and we just felt we needed a new fresh voice to get us on the right track."

Fox's greatest accomplishment no doubt was the improvement of the Bears defense, which finished 10th in the NFL in total yards this year after ranking 30th in each of Trestman's two seasons as head coach in 2013-14.

After being dismissed, Fox released a statement that read: "Thank you to all the players, coaches, city of Chicago and Bears fans everywhere, your passion for the game and this team is unmatched in the NFL. Today is the tough part of our results-oriented business but I wish the Bears organization the best for years to come."

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