Bears name Andrew Janocko QBs coach

Janocko, who turns 34 in April, connects to the Bears through new offensive coordinator Luke Getsy.

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The Bears are naming Andrew Janocko their quarterbacks coach.

The Bears are naming Andrew Janocko their quarterbacks coach.


MOBILE, Ala. — Justin Fields’ support system was completed Thursday when the Bears added two more assistant coaches they hope will develop their second-year quarterback into the player they hope he can be.

Shortly after Vikings assistant Andrew Janocko was named the Bears’ new quarterbacks coach, Giants assistant Tyke Tolbert was named the receivers coach/passing-game coordinator. The two will work with coordinator Luke Getsy and offensive-line coach Chris Morgan to craft an offense designed to fit Fields better than former coach Matt Nagy’s scheme did. 

The Bears will use outside-zone rushing principles in the style of former NFL coach Mike Shanahan, with run plays that feature Fields. Getsy, Janocko and Morgan all come from the Shanahan coaching tree.

In the air, Getsy will blend West Coast offense principles with an aggressive deep-pass scheme he learned from college coach Joe Moorhead.

Janocko, 33, connects to the Bears through Getsy, who was a graduate assistant at Pittsburgh in 2010 when Janocko was a backup QB. Both played high school football in Pennsylvania and attended Pitt, although Getsy transferred to Akron for his final two seasons.

Janocko spent last season as the Vikings’ quarterbacks coach, working with Kirk Cousins, who won eight of his 16 starts, completed two-thirds of his passes and threw for 33 touchdowns and seven interceptions. While Cousins might be an uninspiring case study for Bears fans, consider this: He has thrown for at least 4,000 yards in six of the last seven seasons. No Bears quarterback has eclipsed Erik Kramer’s 3,838 yards from 1995.

The Bears picked Janocko after interviewing former Panthers offensive coordinator Joe Brady. On Wednesday, Brady chose to become Josh Allen’s quarterbacks coach in Buffalo.

Janocko — pronounced juh-NO-co — has spent most of his career coaching players other than quarterbacks. Since joining the Vikings in 2015, he was as an offensive quality control coach, assistant offensive line coach and, in 2020, receivers coach. In 2018, he and former Bears tight ends coach Clancy Barone teamed as co-offensive line coaches after Tony Sparano died just before the start of training camp.

Janocko was a grad assistant at Rutgers in 2011 and spent the next two years as a Buccaneers offensive assistant after Scarlet Knights coach Greg Schiano took the NFL job. He spent 2014 as the quarterbacks coach at Division II Mercyhurst.

Jonocko and Tolbert were almost co-workers last year after Tolbert interviewed for the Vikings’ offensive coordinator job. He has been a receivers coach every year since 2003, working for the Cardinals, Bills, Panthers, Broncos and Giants. 

Like the Bears, the Vikings are replacing both their head coach and general manager. The Bears’ new brain trust — coach Matt Eberflus and GM Ryan Poles — have been busy filling out their staff. They flew home Thursday from a 24-hour stint at the Senior Bowl.

One day after bringing Alan Williams on as defensive coordinator and adding linebackers coach Dave Borgonzi from the Colts, Eberflus added a third former Colts defensive coach. David Overstreet II will reprise his 2021 Colts role as assistant defensive backs coach, focusing on nickel backs, a crucial position in Eberflus’ 4-3 cover-2 defense. 

Overstreet was a four-year starter at safety at Missouri while Eberflus was the team’s defensive coordinator; the Bears signed him briefly as an undrafted free agent in 2007. He’s the son of former Oklahoma running back David Overstreet, a first-round pick of the Dolphins in 1981 who died in a car accident in 1984.

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