INDIANAPOLIS – When new Bears coach Matt Eberflus was seeking an offensive coordinator, Luke Getsy checked all the boxes.
The first assistant that Eberflus added to his staff, Getsy spent the past three seasons as Packers quarterbacks coach and the last two as Green Bay's passing game coordinator. Under Getsy's tutelage, quarterback Aaron Rodgers won the NFL MVP award each of the last two seasons while directing a high-powered offense.
"When you look at innovation for play-callers and guys that have been part of systems, what you want to do is look at the tape," Eberflus said Tuesday at the NFL Combine. "So, what family did they come from and what style does that particular group play and show and the innovations they have with their plays, and that group [in Green Bay] has done that throughout, and that's what brought me the interest in Luke throughout the whole process.
"I've been in the league almost 15 years now and those guys, you look at and say, 'they're hard to defend, they're very innovative in the first 15 [plays], they're great coming out of halftime, they're really good in situations,' and that's what attracted me to Luke."
Like the rest of the assistants he hired, Eberflus views Getsy as an excellent teacher.
"Being a teacher in our system—it doesn't matter offense, defense or kicking—that's the first quality we look for," Eberflus said. "Because if you can't take your message from the board and put it onto the players and then take it onto the field, that's what we want to have with each guy. That's what Luke brings to the table because I've had lengthy conversations with him about his style and how he goes about his business there and it's been outstanding."
Building relationships with players
Eberflus is still getting to know his players, who won't return to Halas Hall en masse until the start of the voluntary offseason program Monday, April 4.
"I've texted most of the guys that are under contract and I've talked to guys just about personal things: 'Hey, how you doing? How's the family? How are you enjoying your time?' And really that's it …
"This is a clean slate for them. We're starting new, and I told a lot of guys, 'Hey, you're walking on fresh grass here. This is a new staff. New systems. You have to learn it. You've got to dive into it and you've got to put everything you have into it.' Our systems are not hard to understand, but they're hard to implement in terms of the player because the way we ask them to play in terms of the physical style, the effort, the mental intensity, those things right there are going to be different to those players. And when they come in, they'll have to understand that and they will understand that pretty quick. It's going to be a little different for them, but refreshing."
Blending scouting and coaching
Eberflus has enjoyed working with new Bears general manager Ryan Poles, describing him as "rock solid as a person, as a human being, very organized," adding that Poles and the rest of the personnel department have been working tirelessly to prepare for free agency and the draft.
"They've been in that room basically 24/7 since we've gotten hired and working with the coaches in the afternoon," Eberflus said. "We really don't want to have lines in terms of scouting and coaching. We want to just kind of blend them together to make sure we're all working on the same team to get the greatest product on the field. [Poles] has been great to work with so far."
Eberflus returns to old stomping grounds
Eberflus is back in familiar surroundings this week, but the Bears coach is experiencing the NFL Combine from a much different perspective.
After spending the last 30 seasons as an assistant coach in college and the NFL—including the last four as Colts defensive coordinator—Eberflus has returned to Lucas Oil Stadium for the first time as a head coach.
"It's been 30 years coming, so I feel pretty good about it," Eberflus said. "I've seen a lot of good friends here that have congratulated me and my family. It's been great to see them. I've had a lot of good conversations with them. It feels really good."