(670 The Score) Bears defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano announced his retirement Wednesday.
The news was first reported by the Athletic on Tuesday evening before Pagano confirmed it a day later.
“After 36 years of coaching the game I love, I have decided to retire from the National Football League," Pagano said in a statement. "I’d like to sincerely thank the McCaskey family, Ted Phillips, Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy for the opportunity to be a part of such an amazing organization. Also, many thanks to the Irsay family and the Colts organization. I am forever grateful to that community and to the support they have always given me both on and off the field. I’d also like to thank all the coaches, players and staff throughout my career. Thank you will never be enough to express my gratitude.
“As much as I love coaching, it takes a lot of time away from your family and loved ones. I’m excited to start this new chapter of my life and can’t wait to be able to spend more time with my family. This has been an amazing ride and I have made countless relationships that I will cherish forever.”
With the departure of Pagano, the Bears will be seeking their third defensive coordinator in the last four seasons. Pagano was hired in January 2019 to replace Vic Fangio, who left to become head coach of the Broncos.
Pagano, 60, has been coaching since 1984, when he began as a graduate assistant at USC. He spent six seasons as head coach of the Colts from 2012-'17 before being fired in Indianapolis.
After a dominant 2018 campaign, the Bears' defense regressed under Pagano's direction in the past two seasons. Chicago was 11th in total defense and 14th in scoring defense in 2020.
Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for 670TheScore.com. Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670.