Hot Seat Watch: How hot is Matt Nagy’s seat after 11 games?

·6 min read

After one of the weirdest weeks in the Matt Nagy Era, the Chicago Bears snapped their five-game losing streak. The Bears beat the Detroit Lions 16-14 with a last-second field goal from Cairo Santos. This win makes Nagy 7-1 against the Lions in his coaching career.

A win over the Lions isn’t going to save Nagy’s job, though. It’s going to take more. Even after the two-point win on Thanksgiving, fans have continued with the “Fire Nagy” chants.

Most recently, on Friday. the United Center chanted “Fire Nagy” during the Chicago Blackhawks win against the Blues.

So, what was so weird about the past seven days? The firing rumors. Early last week it was reported that Nagy would be fired win or lose following the Bears’ Thanksgiving game. That is yet to happen, but the news took the football world by storm.

Many websites covered the news but were quickly backtracking after George McCaskey, the team’s chairman, came out in support of Nagy. That likely eliminates the possibility of a mid-season firing, but it isn’t going to be ruled out totally. With games against the Cardinals, Packers, and Vikings on the horizon, these rumors could become true.

Like always, Nagy’s hot seat will be on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being the coolest and 10 being the hottest seat for Nagy.

Week 12 Hot Seat: 9.5

AP Photo/Duane Burleson

In the most important win of the season for Matt Nagy, who said this meant the world to him, his seat continues to heat up. Why, after a win, does it become hotter? The reaction from the fan base and the potential loss of the locker room.

The fan base reaction has been to just chant “Fire Nagy” everywhere. From Bulls games to Blackhawks games, it’s been chanted. Of course, they were chanted at the end of the Bears’ 16-13 loss to the Ravens last week.

The team just hasn’t been overwhelmingly better. They barley beat the winless Lions. The Bears, under Nagy, are 7-1 against Detroit. It’s a game they were suppose to win and up until one second left, they were losing 14-13. The offense did improve, but they played against one of the worst defenses in football. The pressure just from the fans alone has his seat hotter.

What about the losing the locker room rumors? Jordan Schultz, who is close with Allen Robinson, reported last week that “An overwhelming number of Bears players want Matt Nagy gone.”

If these rumors are true, it’s hard to believe Nagy survives the offseason. As Schultz’s tweet says, no Bears’ head coach has been fired in franchise history. That would make them likely to not make the switch until season’s end. Even Marc Trestman, how poorly his last year went, was allowed to finish the season.

If there is the right time to fire Nagy, it’s likely this offseason. There’s no reason to create a worse environment for rookie quarterback Justin Fields. He’s already in a bad situation, there’s no sense in making it worse. Let Fields and the next Bears’ general manager find the right head coach for him.

How does Nagy's seat get hotter?

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Nagy just has to continue doing what he has been doing the last few weeks for his seat to continue getting hotter. Right now, he’s at a 9.5. The reasons, rumors of him being fired, losing the locker room, and of course, the pressure he has to endure from the vocal fans.

The louder the fans get, the worse it will look for Nagy. Though the fans don’t run the team, if there isn’t a strong base inside Halas Hall, it could continue to turn players away from Nagy,

Unless the Bears are competitive with or can steal wins against the Cardinals, the Packers, and/or the Vikings, the era of Nagy is over after Week 18. He cannot continue to be out-coach and lose to playoff teams. It’s Year 4 of this stuff. It’s been the same since 2019.

Another thing to note, Nagy is 20-23 as a coach since 2018. Overall he is 32-27. At face value, 32-27 isn’t terrible. When it’s taken into context of how poorly the last three seasons have gone, it’s terrible.

How does Nagy's seat get cooler?

AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh

It’s hard to see Matt Nagy’s seat getting cooler after the rumors that came out last week. Good news for Nagy is these rumors weren’t confirmed by anyone inside the organization publicly.

If the Bears can go on a run and finish with eight or nine wins, he has a small chance of retaining his job in 2022. That would include getting potential wins over the Cardinals, Vikings (twice), Packers, Seahawks, or Giants. At 4-7, to make the playoffs they have to likely win out. All of these games are against NFC teams that, besides the Packers, will be fighting for that last wild card spot.

As said last week, his seat doesn’t get cooler with a win over the Lions. Somehow though, it got hotter in the eyes of everyone outside of the organization.

To cool his seat down, there has to be multiple wins against those teams that are in the running for the playoffs. Nagy has lost just one game in his coaching career to the Vikings. He’s undefeated against the Seahawks and Cardinals. He has one loss to the Giants. If he can continue his winning ways against these teams, his seat will cool down.

It’s hard for one to believe all 53 players on the active roster can continue to buy into Nagy. We’ve seen many plays make comments throughout the season that would hint that he doesn’t have the locker room. Whether it’s Nick Foles mouthing that “this offense isn’t working” or Jaylon Johnson last week potentially putting Nagy “on blast”, negative things have been said about him.

If Nagy continues to “Be You” these last few weeks, he’ll be looking for a new job this offseason. If he somehow can turn this ship around, there’s a small chance.

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