Bears coach Matt Nagy appeared on several national radio shows Wednesday to discuss the offseason program, the competition for the starting quarterback position and more. Here are some highlights from those interviews:
Lunch Talk Live with Mike Tirico, NBCSN
On operating the virtual offseason program:
"We took the first week that we were allowed to be with the players and we kind of used that as a get-to-know-your-computer type week with the coaches: When to hit mute, when not to hit mute. What backgrounds to have. Having your kids be a part of it. But ever since then, which feels like a long time ago, now we all feel like pros at it and we're really effective, we're productive. We're comfortable now. We're not uncomfortable. I feel like we're rolling right now in regards to installs. We're having some people come in and talk. It's been really, really good. This is definitely something I think a lot of us, just talking to some other head coaches across the league, it might be something we implement certain ways in the future."
On how missing OTAs impacts the quarterback competition between Mitchell Trubisky and Nick Foles:
"We actually have several competitions going on within our offense and defense, and certainly at the quarterback position every rep that you get, you want it to be valuable. So we're losing reps right now in the OTAs. We'll get them back in training camp. We'll be creative in how we do that as a staff. But we'll make it work. Mitch and Nick have been great in the classroom. Obviously, the competition hasn't started yet over the Internet. But they're excited and we're looking forward to it."
On the potential rule that owners will vote on Thursday giving teams a fourth-and-15 play from their own 25-yard line in lieu of an onside kick:
"It's intriguing in so many ways. What we're trying to do as a staff is be prepared for both. If it does get [approved], it's going to create some interesting decisions for head coaches to make in that situation. I'm always all about creativity and trying to make this game as best as we can make it and we'll roll with the punches. It will be interesting to see which way they go. I know this: If it does pass, that's a new implemented part of the game and we'll have to have some good discussions on how we want to handle it."
The Herd with Colin Cowherd, FOX Sports
On the competition between Trubisky and Foles:
"One of the things that we've tried to do, and it makes life so much easier, is we've been really honest with both of them. The simple fact of the matter is we want to have the best possible team we can have in Chicago with the Bears. So right now we're presented with a great healthy competition between two quarterbacks that are going to battle their tails off. They understand that and the thing with Mitch is that he is very competitive. He is 19-10 as you mentioned. But he also knows that he can grow in a lot of different ways, and so the time is right now for that to happen. He's excited for it; can't wait for the challenge. And then Nick, coming into the same situation, he's had an interesting journey as well. He's been at the top of the mountain and he's also been at the very bottom. But they're both really good people, and when you're in this situation—when you have two good human beings that are doing it for the best of the team—it will work out, because we as coaches are very honest and open, and now it's going to push both of them and it's going to make our team better. We feel like we're going to be better because of that."
On the pressure and urgency to win this season:
"We all understand that every year is different. It's been a really interesting journey for us. In 2018, to come in with no quote-unquote expectations or standards for our team, we were young and I think what they realized is that every single day we need to be able to put out our best. We stayed very healthy and we had a lot of success. There was a lot of swag within our team, there was a lot of fun. You saw that creativity with bringing in defensive guys down in the red zone and the goal line, and we were successful with it.
"Now, all of a sudden you go to 2019 and we struggled more as a team. We've got fans in the city that are very passionate, very loyal, they care. Their care factor is extremely high. We would not want it any other way, and we're going to do everything we can … myself as a head coach, I need to be vulnerable and understand that it starts with me and whatever I didn't do good enough in 2019 I need to fix. So I look that thing dead on and I understand that's what we're going to do. It starts with details. Details, details, details. 'Attack' and 'aggressive' are words that we're using a lot. And trust. We've had two years of a great culture now. We never gave up after losing four games in a row last year, and that's a credit to our players and our coaches that we stuck together and gave ourselves a chance. So we're really looking forward to 2020."
Dog Day Sports with Steve Torre and Danny Kanell, Sirius XM
On the virtual offseason program:
"No one's complained about any inconveniences. In certain ways there are things that we're doing now that we would never be able to do if we weren't in this. For instance, me being able to jump into every Zoom meeting room by position and just say hi to the guys on the other side of the ball, or see how guys are doing. I couldn't do that as much as I can now. And so we're just looking at, 'What are the silver linings?'And there are more than you probably think."
On rookie tight end Cole Kmet:
"He's been really, really impressive in these meetings. Basically everything that we saw on tape, everything that we saw through our interview process with him. there's zero change from where we're at now in these meetings that we have with him and the conversations that we're able to have. He just is really, really sharp. And right now for all these players going into the 2020 season with where we're at with the limited OTAs or no OTAs heading into training camp, the best thing to do is to learn that playbook so that you can come in and really play fast, and he's done every bit of that. I call on players a lot in these meetings. I'll call on Cole all the time and he always has the right details with his answers, and when you have that, that's very comforting. Now, there are things that he'll continue to grow with on the physical side as a player. But mentally, there haven't been a bunch of guys as a rookie that have been as impressive as him."