A week after his team nearly upset the 49ers without him on the sidelines, Matt Nagy has returned to the Bears and is set to coach in Week 9. The fourth-year coach was replaced by special teams coordinator Chris Tabor during the club's Week 8 loss to San Francisco due to COVID-19 protocols, but he was back at Halas Hall this week to prepare for the Steelers.
When Nagy was ruled out for Week 8, he became the second head coach this season to miss a game due to COVID. Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury had previously been sidelined after testing positive for COVID-19, only to return a week later. Ironically, the Bears enjoyed one of their best offensive performances of the year in Nagy's absence, scoring more points (22) than at any point since Week 4 and witnessing a breakout start for rookie quarterback Justin Fields, who made plays both on the ground and through the air.
Earlier this season, Nagy repeatedly refused to reveal whether he maintained play-calling duties for the offense. Offensive coordinator Bill Lazor handled those responsibilities against the 49ers, as he reportedly had in weeks prior. He figures to continue calling plays upon Nagy's return for Sunday's game against Pittsburgh.
Nagy had some good news to share during his return to Halas Hall on Thursday, too, announcing that the Bears have activated the practice window for running back David Montgomery. Working to return from injured reserve, Montgomery must be activated to the 53-man roster in the next three weeks, or remain on IR for the rest of the year. In the event he isn't called up for Sunday, rookie Khalil Herbert is expected to start in his place.