MOBILE, Ala. - - As the Bears' search for an offensive coordinator enters its third week, Ravens quarterbacks coach Hue Jackson flew Monday to Chicago, where he will meet with general manager Jerry Angelo and coach Lovie Smith today.
Jackson, who interviewed for the offensive coordinator position for the Oakland Raiders, according to a source with knowledge of the situation, enters the picture while Ken Zampese is now off the list.
Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis told the Tribune that Zampese will remain as the team's quarterbacks coach. After Zampese interviewed with the Bears for the position Jan 12-13, Lewis gave his coach a week to make a decision.
"For us, that time has come and gone as far as the deadline," Lewis said. "That's kind of closed up, and I don't think Lovie has made a decision on what he wants to do yet. When we have a guy who goes and interviews for a job, we ask him to make a decision in a timely manner. We've got to protect our organization as well."
Lewis said Smith was made aware of the deadline after the Bengals granted the Bears permission to speak with Zampese, who had worked with Smith in St. Louis. The Bears did not extend a contract offer, according to a source, and such deadlines are commonplace in the league for teams that would then have to fill an opening of their own if a coach were to leave.
While the perception is that no one wants to come work for the Bears, there isn't a person who is known to have turned the job down. Rob Chudzinski, the assistant head coach/tight ends in San Diego, interviewed Thursday, and the Tribune reported Saturday that he was no longer in the picture. The Bears failed in their efforts to get an interview with Jeremy Bates before he went to Seattle, and Green Bay blocked the team's efforts to meet with Packers quarterbacks coach Tom Clements.
Jackson has worked with Joe Flacco for the past two seasons, and he was an offensive coordinator in Atlanta in 2007 and Washington in 2003. He also served as an offensive coordinator at Southern California and California.