Bears name Adam Gase offensive coordinator
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MOBILE, Ala. — The Bears landed Adam Gase, after all.
Eighteen days after he interviewed for the Bears’ head coaching job and hours after meeting with new coach John Fox on Wednesday at Halas Hall, Gase was named the team’s new offensive coordinator.
The 36-year-old signed a three-year deal, sources told the Sun-Times.
Gase spent the last two seasons under Fox as the Broncos’ offensive coordinator, leading the NFL in points, yards and passing yards during that time.
The Broncos set NFL records with 606 points scored and 76 touchdowns in 2013; their 482 points was the second-most in the league in 2014.
Gase earned an admirer in future Hall of Famer Peyton Manning, who spoke with teams on his behalf last offseason and earlier this month said he deserved the chance to interview for a head coaching job.
The Bears added a man familiar to both Fox and new general manager Ryan Pace. Gase is married to the daughter of Saints assistant Joe Vitt, who worked with Pace in New Orleans.
From 2009-10, Gase coached Broncos wide receivers — including, in his first season, Brandon Marshall — before moving to quarterbacks coach when the Broncos hired Fox in 2011.
Gase emerged as a hot head coaching candidate this offseason, interviewing with the Bears’ triumvirate of chairman George McCaskey, president Ted Phillips and advisor Ernie Accorsi on Jan. 3, before the team had hired a general manager.
He interviewed for the 49ers’ and Broncos’ head coaching jobs last week.
Gase’s job is getting tougher, trading Manning for Bears quarterback Jay Cutler and being tasked with improving an offense than finished 23rd with 19.9 points per game last season.
After Senior Bowl practices this week, Jaguars coach Gus Bradley, who interviewed Gase for his coordinator opening, said he did an “outstanding job” and called him a “good coach.”
Unsolicited, Ravens coach John Harbaugh said in a teleconference Wednesday that Gase impressed him while interviewing for the coordinator job that went to former Bears coach Marc Trestman.
“I wouldn’t mind saying that Adam did a great job, as well,” Harbaugh said. “He was excellent in his interview. You can see why he’s been successful and why he has such a bright future.”
Marshall praised Gase on Twitter, too, wishing him congratulations and calling the move a “excellent hire.”
“Congratulations to my guy Adam Gase. It was good catching up and laughing with him today about the Denver Days. Excellent hire. #BearDown
Fox continued to form his coaching staff Wednesday, hiring defensive backs coach Ed Donatell, who spent he last four seasons in San Francisco working for new Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio.
Donatell — who has 36 years of coaching experience, including 24 in the NFL —replaces Jon Hoke, who had worked for two Bears regimes dating to 2009.
The team announced, too, that strength and conditioning coordinator Mike Clark will not return.
No season ticket hike
The Bears won’t increase ticket prices in 2015, the team announced Wednesday. United Club tickets will range from $275 to $550 per game, with non-club tickets $81 to $175.
Their prices jumped 4.7 percent between 2013 and 2014.
In a letter to season ticket holders, Bears president and CEO Ted Phillips praised Pace and Fox, and said the team will create new enhancements to Soldier Field.
Adam L. Jahns contributed.