Smith Goes with Familiar Face as DB Coach

Lake Forest - Although Lovie Smith was willing to try something new on offense, he went with a like mind as his hire on defense.

The Bears hired Perry Fewell Thursday to coach the team's defensive backs. Fewell spent the last two seasons as the secondary coach for the Rams, including one with Lovie Smith when he was defensive coordinator at St. Louis.

Prior to that, Fewell worked the previous five seasons in the same position for the Jacksonville Jaguars (1998-2002).

Smith had contacted Leslie Frazier about the position, but in the end decided to go with someone he had worked with in the past.

Frazier, who played for the Bears from 1981-86, had recently been fired as Bengals defensive coordinator. He coached with Ron Rivera at Philadelphia and was also a former teammate of his from their days in Chicago.

Fewell will be taking over a unit that produced 14 interceptions last season. The total could have been much hire considering Mike Brown played in just two games, Charles Tillman missed half the season and Jerry Azumah was a spectator for the opening month of the campaign.

Perry Fewell Bio
Prior to advancing to the NFL, Fewell spent 13 seasons as an assistant coach in college. He was the secondary coach at Vanderbilt from 1995-97 (assistant head coach/secondary in 1997).

Fewell began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at North Carolina from 1985-86, before being hired as the defensive backs coach at Army in 1987. Fewell coached wide receivers at Kent State from 1988-91, before returning to Army as the defensive line coach from 1992-94. A four-year letterwinner at Lenoir-Rhyne College, Fewell attended South Point High School in Belmont, N.C. He was inducted into the Belmont Sports Hall of Fame in 2001.

Fewell has coached two Pro Bowl safeties during his seven seasons in the NFL: Carnell Lake with Jacksonville in 1999 and Aeneas Williams with St. Louis in 2003. In his first season in St. Louis, Fewell helped the Rams tie for fourth in the NFL with 24 interceptions. In Jacksonville, Fewell helped the Jaguars register a franchise-record 19 interceptions in 1999. Fewell has coached in the playoffs in four of his seven NFL seasons.

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