KANSAS CITY — Just over 21 months after he was fired by the Bears, Matt Nagy will be facing his former team for the first time in the regular season.
Is that a big deal for the current offensive coordinator for the Kansas City Chiefs?
“For me, it’s not about that. It really isn’t,” said Nagy when asked about the significance of facing the Bears on Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium at 3:25 p.m.
He’s in his second year back with the Chiefs and head coach Andy Reid after a very eventful four seasons as the head coach of the Bears. Nagy was the NFL’s Coach of the Year in 2018 after they went 12-4 to win the NFC North division.
But offensive inconsistency plagued his teams the next three years, as the Bears went 8-8 the next two seasons, squeezing into the playoffs in the seventh Wild Card spot in 2020. After a 6-11 season in 2021, Nagy along with general manager Ryan Pace were fired in January 2022.
Returning as offensive coordinator in Kansas City soon after, which was the role he held before taking the Bears’ job, Nagy helped the Chiefs’ to a Super Bowl title last season.
“This is about our team vs. them and me being a Kansas City Chief and going out and being better from last week, regardless of who we’re playing,” said Nagy of facing the Bears. “We’ve got to improve offensively, be better there, and that’s really been the focus since that game ended last weekend.”
While this is the first time he’ll face the Bears in this stint with the Chiefs in the regular season, it won’t be the first time he’s gone up against his former team overall the last 21 months. On August 13, 2022, Kansas City opened their preseason in Chicago as Nagy started the next chapter of his career.
That’s a big reason why the offensive coordinator said it’s easy not to read as much into the match-up with this former team this week.
“I feel like I got that out of the way last year, and now, here we are, a year and a half later. It’s a different team there now,” said Nagy. “There’s still some players that I know. I built some unbelievable relationships with people in the building. Very appreciative of the relationships I built with George McCaskey, Mrs. McCaskey, Ted Phillips, Ryan Poles, etc., a lot of players and coaches.
“That’s in the past. Right now I’m so excited to be in here with these guys, practicing every day, making what you just asked me simple so that we can go and do everything we can to get a win, for real.”
His team will be heavy favorites to do so on Sunday against a Bears team that is dealing with a number of issues this week. But for Nagy, only what’s going on with his team is top of mind when he’s on the opposite sidelines against his former team.