Five-foot-something Dowell Loggains towered over reporters Friday when he stepped onto an elevated platform to conduct his first press conference as Bears offensive coordinator.
"First time in my life I've looked down on people like this," Loggains joked.
Though short in stature, Loggains is long on knowledge of the Bears offense and its personnel. After serving as quarterbacks coach last season, he takes over as coordinator following the departure of Adam Gase to become the Dolphins head coach.
Loggains enjoys an excellent working relationship with Jay Cutler and is eager to help the veteran quarterback build on a strong 2015 campaign. Cutler posted a career-high 92.3 passer rating last season, reducing his interceptions from 18 in 2014 to 11.
"I'm looking forward to coaching him every day and continuing the progess we've made and build off that where we ended last year, but we definitely could be better," Loggains said.
"There is a different quarterbacks coach (Dave Ragone), but Jay and I will be in constant communication just like last year where I was in charge of running every meeting. I will be involved in the quarterback meetings and be around still."
Bears quarterback Jay Cutler posted a career-high 92.3 passer rating last season, reducing his interceptions from 18 in 2014 to 11.
After not offering a contract to Matt Forte, the Bears added running back Jordan Howard in the fifth round of the draft to a crowded backfield that includes 2014 fourth-round pick Jeremy Langford and 2013 fourth-round selection Ka'Deem Carey.
Last season Langford rushed for 537 yards and a team-high six touchdowns on 148 carries, while Carey added 159 yards and two TDs on 43 attempts.
"We like where Jeremy's at," Loggains said. "He needs to continue to develop. There are things he can do a better job of in the passing game. We still like our other backs. Ka'Deem Carey finished strong for us last year. We obviously drafted a back. We're excited about getting Jacquizz Rodgers back as well, getting him healthy."
The Bears see Howard as a physical north/south runner who can wear down defenses. The 6-foot, 230-pounder looks to be an ideal complement to the fast and elusive Langford.
"[Howard is] a bigger back," Loggains said. "He's a change-of-pace back. Their skill sets are different. We'll use the skill set the way it needs to be. We won't ask them to both do the same thing, but we'll find out what Howard does well and we'll play to that."
Teams John Fox coached in Carolina and Denver generally employed a backfield-by-committee approach. Asked how the Bears intend to share the workload, Loggains said: "We're going to do what each player does well. Sometimes, maybe the hot hand gets the carries. Sometimes it's 30, sometimes it's 10. It depends. Each game plays out differently.
"Coach Fox has had a lot of success through his career of having different backs and playing a lot of different guys. He had some really talented guys. It's kind of a feel thing. Stan Drayton, our running backs coach, has a great feel for what his guys can and can't do and he does a great job with the rotation."
During the offseason program, Loggains has liked what he's seen from receiver Kevin White, a 2015 first-round pick who missed his entire rookie season with a leg injury.
"I can tell you about his character and he's everything we expected," Loggains said. "He's a hard worker. His attitude is contagious because he is very positive; he doesn't have bad days. I think that between him and Eddie [Royal] and some of the other receivers, they're bringing out the best in each other, and competition does that. We feel good about the receiver room. It's a deep room and they're making each other better."
One receiver who is not participating in the voluntary offseason program is veteran Alshon Jeffery, who has been training on his own in Florida. Jeffery signed a one-year franchise tender with the Bears but still wants to ink a lucrative long-term agreement.
"We all wish Alshon was here," Loggains said. "We're in communication with him. He knows how we feel about the situation and him. But [his absence] is an opportunity for some of these other receivers that we like to get opportunities and we'll find out more about them."
Loggains isn't worried about Jeffery being a step behind when he rejoins his teammates.
"I'm not concerned about that," Loggains said. "I know Alshon is working hard right now and we're excited to get him back when he shows up."