CHICAGO (AP) - The Chicago Bears hired Montreal Alouettes coach Marc Trestman on Wednesday to replace the fired Lovie Smith.
He has two basic tasks _ fix the offense and lead the team to the playoffs on a consistent basis.
How he meshes with quarterback Jay Cutler could go a long way toward determining his success.
It’s the first head coaching job in the NFL for Trestman, a longtime assistant in the league who spent the past five seasons coaching the CFL’s Alouettes and led them to two Grey Cup titles.
Trestman was an offensive coordinator with Cleveland, San Francisco, Arizona and Oakland.
Chicago general manager Phil Emery had a wide search, meeting with at least 13 candidates. Besides Trestman, he also brought back Seattle Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and the Indianapolis Colts’ Bruce Arians for second interviews.
Trestman wasted little time starting to assemble his staff, bringing in two new coordinators.
The Bears hired New Orleans Saints offensive line coach Aaron Kromer as their offensive coordinator, hoping to revive a group that often sputtered with Mike Tice calling the plays.
The also added Dallas Cowboys special teams coordinator Joe DeCamillis as their special teams coordinator and assistant head coach to replace Dave Toub.
The Bears announced those moves Wednesday evening.
The coaching changes come on the heels of a 10-win season in which they fell apart after winning seven of their first eight games.
Smith was let go after nine years, ending a run that included a trip to the Super Bowl but also saw Chicago miss the playoffs five of the past six seasons.
That move did not sit well with some players at the time, but Cutler and star receiver Brandon Marshall are looking forward to working with Trestman.
“He’s been successful wherever he’s been,” Cutler told the Bears’ website. “He’s from the West Coast coaching tree, which I’m familiar with. It’s what I came into the league with, with (Mike) Shanahan (with the Denver Broncos in 2006), so I’m looking forward to it.
“He understands quarterbacks. He understands their thought process and the minds of quarterbacks and what we have to go through. It’s going to be a quarterback-friendly system and I can’t wait to get started with him.”