iNDICA NEWS BUREAU-
An Indian American has been named as a new defensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears, making him the first National Football League (NFL) Coordinator of South Asian and Indian descent.
Last week, the Chicago Bears promoted Sean Desai, 37, from safeties coach to defensive coordinator. He replaces Chuck Pagano, who announced retirement early after 36 years in coaching.
“We are very fortunate and excited to promote from within and announce Desai has been named defensive coordinator for our football team,” coach Matt Nagy said in a statement.
“He is a person of high football intelligence, extremely detail-oriented, has a very strong work ethic and I cannot think of someone more deserving to lead our defense,” he added.
“Sean is a family man of high character and the respect he has within our building from coaches, players and staff is unparalleled.”
Bears found Desai, who has served with the team dating back to 2013, when he was hired as a quality control assistant. Desai was promoted to safeties coach in 2019.
The team had explored a variety of candidates for defensive coordinator, including James Bettcher, Johnathon Gannon and even Mike Singletary. But they ultimately decided to promote from within in Desai, who is one of the young, rising coaches in the NFL.
“He is a person of high football intelligence, extremely detail-oriented, has a very strong work ethic and I cannot think of someone more deserving to lead our defense. Sean is a family man of high character and the respect he has within our building from coaches, players and staff is unparalleled,” Nagy said.
While the Bears were searching for Pagano’s replacement, former Bears outside linebacker Sam Acho offered a strong endorsement of Desai.
In one Twitter post, Acho wrote: “The Bears don’t have to look far for their next DC. Sean Desai has been ready for that role for years. He was Vic Fangio’s right-hand man for 4 years, & helped craft that defense to greatness. Smart, talented, knows ball and has all the credentials. All he needs is an opportunity.”
In addition to that, Indian-American Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi too welcomed Desia’s promotion.
“As a die-hard Chicago Bears fan, a person of South Asian and Indian descent, and as an American, I’m thrilled by the news that the Bears have chosen Sean Desai as their new Defensive Coordinator, making him the first coordinator of South Asian and Indian descent in NFL history,” he said.
“I’m excited for what this means for the Bears’ chances next year, but also its significance to the league and to the countless young people aspiring to follow in Sean’s footsteps,” Krishnamoorthi said.
According to Chicago Bears, Desai began his coaching career at Temple, his alma mater, in 2006, serving as a defensive assistant and special teams coach for five seasons. As special teams coordinator in 2010 at the age of 27, he was one of the youngest coordinators in college football.