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NFL

Bears fill coaching vacancy with CFL coach, NFL vet Trestman

| Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, 11:21 a.m.
Former Montreal Alouettes coach Marc Trestman (right) was hired by the Bears on Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, to replace the fired Lovie Smith. AP Photo/Adrian Wyld

The Bears hired Montreal Alouettes coach Marc Trestman on Wednesday to replace the fired Lovie Smith and gave him 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 cast a wide net in his search, meeting with at least 13 candidates. Besides Trestman, he also brought back Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and the Colts' Bruce Arians for second interviews.

Trestman wasted little time starting to assemble his staff.

A person familiar with the situation said the Bears hired Saints offensive line coach Aaron Kromer as their offensive coordinator, hoping to revive a unit that often sputtered with Mike Tice calling the plays. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the move had not been announced.

Kromer served as the Saints' head coach for six games this season while interim coach Joe Vitt was suspended for his role in the bounty scandal. Saints coach Sean Payton had to sit out the year.

The Cowboys, meanwhile, reported on their website that special teams coach Joe DeCamillis was leaving to become Chicago's assistant head coach/special teams coordinator.

• The Cardinals, one of two teams still looking for a head coach, interviewed Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and plan to talk to Arians.

• It's too early for the Falcons to know how much defensive end John Abraham will play in Sunday's NFC title game. Abraham, the NFL's active sacks leader, made it through five snaps in last week's divisional playoff victory over Seattle before aggravating a left ankle injury.

• Andy Reid is putting the final touches on his first coaching staff in Kansas City, hiring former Jaguars offensive line coach Andy Heck to fulfill the same duty with the Chiefs. Reid also announced that Kevin O'Dea will be an assistant special teams coach.

— AP

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