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Nagy receives NFC Coach of Year Award


Bears coach Matt Nagy was honored as the 2018 NFC coach of the year at the annual 101 Awards Saturday night in Kansas City.

Since 1969, the 101 Awards have recognized outstanding achievements in the NFL based on votes by a committee comprised of 101 members of the national media.

In his first season as head coach, Nagy led the Bears to a 12-4 record and the NFC North championship in 2018. The team had finished in last place in the division each of the previous four years with records of 5-11, 6-10, 3-13 and 5-11. The Bears won nine of their final 10 regular-season games for the first time since 1985.

Nagy was previously named NFL coach of the year by the Associated Press and the Pro Football Writers of America.

His 12 wins were the most by a first-year coach in Bears history and more than any of the NFL's other 31 current coaches in their first seasons. In addition, Nagy became the first coach to lead the Bears to a winning record and a postseason berth in his first year since Paddy Driscoll in 1956.

Under Nagy's direction, the Bears went 5-1 against NFC North foes after they were 4-20 versus their division rivals the previous four seasons. They also went 7-1 in regular-season home games, their best record at Soldier Field since the 2005 team also went 7-1.

The Bears had eight players voted to the Pro Bowl in Nagy's first season as coach, the most since they also had eight in 2006, the last year they reached the Super Bowl. The Bears did not have any players selected to the Pro Bowl in 2017.

The culture that Nagy implemented helped the Bears respond to adversity throughout the 2018 season. They rebounded from a season-opening loss to the Packers with three straight wins, from back-to-back defeats to the Dolphins and Patriots with five wins in a row and from a loss to the Giants with four consecutive victories.

Other individuals scheduled to be honored at Saturday night's black-tie awards dinner included Colts coach Frank Reich (AFC coach of the year), Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (AFC offensive player of the year), Saints quarterback Drew Brees (NFC offensive player of the year), Texans defensive end J.J. Watt (AFC defensive player of the year) and Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald (NFC defensive player of the year).