The Chicago Bears will interview New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Dennis Allen for their head coach opening next week, according to Nick Underhill of NewOrleans.Football.
The Bears are the first team to express interest in Allen this coaching cycle. The Philadelphia Eagles interviewed Allen for their open position last year before hiring Nick Sirianni. Allen spent three years as head coach of the Oakland Raiders from 2012-14. He joined the Saints as a defensive assistant in 2015 before taking over the coordinator role beginning in 2016.
After ranking last in the league in points allowed in 2015 and and second-to-last in 2016, the team made massive improvements under Allen. They’ve been in the top half of the league in points allowed in each of the last five seasons with three years inside the top 10 and two straight seasons inside the top five. New Orleans ranked fifth in points allowed last season and fourth in total yards. They improved to fourth in points allowed and were seventh in total yards this season.
The Bears interviewed Reggie McKenzie on Thursday as part of their search for a new general manager. McKenzie was the G.M. in Oakland in 2014 when Allen was hired as Raiders head coach.
Chicago has already interviewed Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich and defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, Indianapolis Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus, Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Nathanial Hackett, Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson and former Colts and Detroit Lions head coach Jim Caldwell.