Being the Bears’ assistant coach appears to come with its own set of difficulties. The Athletic recently revealed that the team’s human resources department had a say in this decision-making process with the sacking of running backs coach David Walker.
The 53-year-old coach had already received a “reprimand” from the team’s HR department for his behavior at work, according to ESPN. It seems that Walker was fired as a result of a second incident of this kind. This was the second midseason departure of an assistant coach; the first being Alan Williams, the former defensive coordinator.
The Bears (2–6) have had a terrible season in 2023; the only bright spot is that they might receive good draft picks in 2024. But the situation is much more confusing because the coaching staff has been changing frequently.
Former Syracuse player and Rochester native David Walker joined the squad with 26 years of coaching experience. His coaching experience included NFL stints with the Colts (2011–14) and the Lions (2016–18), as well as positions as a running backs coach at the university level with Syracuse and Pittsburgh. Interestingly, the Bears led the NFL in rushing yards last season, setting a new record for the team.
With an average of 132.8 rushing yards per game this season, the Bears are sixth in the league even with injuries to starter running back Khalil Herbert and quarterback Justin Fields. Walker’s departure will probably require Chicago to reorganize its coaching staff internally.
Although there are still little specifics regarding Walker’s termination as of early Wednesday morning, it surely raises more questions about the business. This comes after defensive coordinator Alan Williams resigned in September, citing “inappropriate” behavior as the cause of his departure, as ESPN reported. The HR department intervened in this situation as well.
Following his resignation, there were speculations that the FBI had raided Williams’ home and the Bears’ facilities; however, Williams’ lawyer strongly refuted these claims. Williams left the organization without a defensive coordinator, citing family and health concerns for his choice. Head coach Matt Eberflus, who is a defensive specialist, is now in charge of the team’s defensive operations.
The Bears made an unexpected move on Tuesday by acquiring pass rusher Montez Sweat in the midst of these coaching changes. In Week 9, they are supposed to play the Saints. According to Tankathon, following Week 8, they will hold the second and third overall picks in the 2024 NFL Draft.