The Bears offense has been flourishing over the last three weeks and first-year coordinator Luke Getsy deserves much of the credit.
With 11 days between games in mid-October, Getsy took advantage of the mini-bye by conducting a thorough evaluation of the scheme and his players. He followed by implementing key changes that have helped put quarterback Justin Fields and his teammates in the best positions to succeed.
"We started to really look at ourselves and do a good job of self-scouting during that mini-bye," said coach Matt Eberflus. "The coaches [wanted to try] maximizing skill sets of our players, not only Justin's but other skill sets that we have and minimizing what we need to minimize.
"Every group in the NFL has to do that. I thought we did a really good job of that study, and then working into that really into games and looking at some different things that people are doing around the league with quarterbacks that can run with the ball. [Fields] is certainly very talented and is able to do a lot of those things and he's doing it in a smart way. That's the other thing that the coaches have done a nice job of is, 'let's do this in a smart way,' so he can get out of bounds, slide down and do things and also be creative too.'"
“Ever since the mini-bye week he’s done a great job tailoring our offense to my strengths, to the other players’ strengths.” Bears QB Justin Fields on OC Luke Getsy
In the last three games, Getsy has called more designed quarterback runs, read-option plays and play-action passes. That approach, coupled with Fields' continuing growth in his second NFL season, has enabled the former Ohio State standout and the offense to take flight.
The Bears have scored 94 points in their last three games, second most in the NFL. Over that span, Fields has rushed for 320 yards and three touchdowns on 37 carries and thrown for 453 yards with six TDs, one interception and a 106.1 passer rating.
In last Sunday's loss to the Dolphins, Fields rushed for 178 yards—the most in NFL history by a quarterback in a regular-season game—and produced four TDs via three passes and a spectacular 61-yard run. The performance earned him NFC Offensive Player of the Week honors.
"[Getsy] has done a great job these past few weeks," Fields said. "Like coach [Eberflus] said, ever since the mini-bye week he's done a great job tailoring our offense to my strengths, to the other players' strengths. As much as we can do that, we want to do that as much as possible. The more we can do it, the more successful our offense will be."
The Bears enter Week 10 ranked first in the NFL in rushing, averaging 195.4 yards per game. Last Sunday they became the first team since the 1976 Steelers to run for at least 225 yards in four straight games.
"[Getsy] came from Green Bay, where they had a lot of success through the air, doing things that way," said tight end Cole Kmet. "His ability to adjust and see guys' strengths and play to that, especially with Justin, that's been pretty cool … He's been a great leader for the offense."
Getsy is in his first year with the Bears after spending seven of the previous eight seasons with the Packers. He served as Green Bay's offensive quality control coach (2014-15) before being promoted to receivers coach (2016-17). He then left the Packers to become offensive coordinator and receivers coach at Mississippi State in 2018, but returned to Green Bay as quarterbacks coach (2019-21) while also serving as passing game coordinator in 2020-21.
Under Getsy's tutelage, quarterback Aaron Rodgers won back-to-back NFL MVP awards. In 2020, Rodgers led the league and set team records with 48 touchdown passes and a 70.7 completion percentage, and his 121.5 passer rating was the second best in a season in NFL history. In 2021, Rodgers threw for 4,115 yards with 37 TDs, four interceptions and a league-best 111.9 rating.
With Getsy as his position coach in Green Bay in 2016-17, Davante Adams was the only NFL player to record at least 70 receptions and 10 touchdown catches in both seasons.
"Luke has got a good feel for how the offense works," said Bears backup quarterback Trevor Siemian. "You can tell he's coached quarterbacks but he's also coached receivers. He's got a good feel for all the moving parts and what makes certain guys' jobs easier or harder."
Getsy showed his creativity against the Dolphins. On back-to-back plays, he called a jet sweep for Kmet and then had Kmet go in motion, take the center snap and power forward to pick up a first down on third-and-1. On another play, he had receiver Equanimeous St. Brown go in motion and shove Fields forward for a first down on a fourth-and-1 sneak.
"I was talking to some of the other tight ends about this and I think he's got a really good feel," Kmet said. "Sometimes you're in the huddle and you're like, 'oh, hell yeah, that's a great time to call this.' He's got a great feel for all that and all the players are really believing in that. There's definitely a good feel to it that he has for us and how the game is flowing."