Bears

In Kansas City now, Matt Nagy feels ‘like I’m still young’ in coaching profession

Nagy debated taking year away, but ultimately football ‘is in my heart and in my blood.’

Speaking publicly for the first time since the Chicago Bears fired him, Matt Nagy is feeling refreshed in his new role as the quarterbacks coach for the Kansas City Chiefs.

“In life, for me, a lot of my failures that I’ve had, I’ve tried to use to the best of my ability to make me better,” Nagy said Thursday in Kansas City. “Whether it was as a player, throwing a pick, learning from it or as a coach as you go through things, wanting to use those experiences to make me better in the long run. And I feel like I’m still young in this profession and I want use my experiences in Chicago to help me get better here for our team here in Kansas City.”

The Bears fired Nagy in January after four seasons as the head coach in Chicago. About a month later, the Chiefs hired Nagy as QB coach after former QB coach Mike Kafka left to become the offensive coordinator for the New York Giants.

Nagy had not done an interview since his firing. For the 44-year-old coach, a return to Kansas City brings him back to a place where his coaching career thrived under Chiefs head coach Andy Reid. Nagy previously served as the Chiefs’ QB coach from 2013-15, and then as offensive coordinator from 2016-17, before the Bears hired him as head coach.

“There’s a little bit of humility that you have to have to do this, but I really cherish it because you’re doing it with good people,” Nagy said.

Nagy debated taking a year off from coaching. He took some time away after the Bears fired him and contemplated his next move. Ultimately, football called him back.

“It got to a point where it just made sense,” Nagy said. “Football is in my heart and in my blood, and it’s in my wife’s heart and my wife’s blood, too, and my kids, they love it. So why not come back to a great place, to a special place?”

The opportunity to coach Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes directly would be enticing to any quarterback-focused coach. Mahomes is arguably the best in the game at his position. With Kafka leaving over the offseason, this was probably Nagy’s best opportunity to return to the Chiefs. In addition to QB coach, Nagy holds a “senior assistant” designation in his title. He will work with offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy, who was running backs coach when Nagy was the coordinator.

Nagy joked that it’s a little weird going from being in charge of an entire building full of people to being in charge of four quarterbacks. Nagy previously coached Mahomes during Mahomes’ rookie season in 2017, when the 10th overall draft pick sat on the bench behind veteran Alex Smith.

Being back in the quarterback room with Mahomes, Nagy marveled at how much Mahomes has matured.

“I was able to see him and Alex grow together,” Nagy said. “That partnership and see him grow from his rookie year, from game one to the playoff loss against Tennessee, see that relationship build, and that stuck with Patrick, that stuck with me. Now, to come back four or five years later and see in that room how much Patrick has grown, it’s amazing.”

Sean Hammond

Sean Hammond

Sean is the Chicago Bears beat reporter for Shaw Media. He also contributes to high school football coverage at Friday Night Drive. Sean has covered various sports at the amateur, college and professional levels since 2012. He joined Shaw Media in 2016.