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Why Matt Eberflus Should Not Be a Favorite for NFL COY

Matt Eberflus
© Kamil Krzaczynski/USA TODAY NETWORK

When DraftKings released its odds for 2024 NFL Coach of the Year, the typical candidates were near the top of the board. However, there were a couple of surprises on the board, such as seeing Jim Harbaugh and Raheem Morris near the top of the board as candidates. However, the biggest surprise of all the betting odds is that Chicago Bears coach Matt Eberflus is the favorite for the award.

The Bears spent most of this offseason revamping the offensive side of the ball to help quarterback and No. 1 overall draft pick Caleb Williams in his rookie season. They brought in veteran offensive pieces in wide receiver Keenan Allen and running back D'Andre Swift and drafted wide receiver Rome Odunze in the first round—a total steal at the No. 9 overall pick.

The Bears made several coaching changes this offseason, all on the offensive side of the ball, to help Williams succeed.

Flirting With the Hot Seat

However, some hot-seat rankings have Eberflus as one of the favorites to win the NFL's Coach of the Year, though his seat is relatively warm, and let's be honest, rightfully so, considering his track record during his first two seasons in Chicago.

If you go back to Week 4 of last season, there was speculation that if the Bears did not win the game against the Washington Commanders, Eberflus would be fired shortly after. However, in what ended up being the Bears' best performance of the season, Chicago defeated Washington 40-20 with a dominating first half. Chicago put up 27 points in the first half, while Washington put a mere three points on the board.

Expectations for Eberflus in 2024

Though Eberflus survived last season, expectations are high for a potential franchise quarterback in his rookie season. Whenever a team drafts a rookie quarterback, there is much uncertainty about how that player will respond to the demands of the NFL.

Last year, Williams had the pressure of being the defending Heisman Trophy winner. Last season, there was some criticism from the media and fans. Still, those criticisms will become more critical this fall, especially in a major market city like Chicago that is desperate for a winner.

Caleb Williams
© David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

You might wonder how this relates to Eberflus, and it's easy. Williams's success will have much to do with how Eberflus's tenure will continue in Chicago. The NFC North might be one of the best in the NFL, with the opportunity to have multiple teams in the playoffs in a less-than-stellar NFC. Most rookie quarterbacks do not have a CJ Stroud-type ascension in their rookie season.

With the Bears' schedule heading into this season, some could argue that Eberflus should be in the running for Coach of the Year at the end of the year.

If you want to bet on him winning the award, there is a massive risk, considering his success will be determined by William's development.


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