One potential Jim Harbaugh competitor for Chargers bows out of the running

2024 CFP National Championship - Michigan v Washington
2024 CFP National Championship - Michigan v Washington / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages

The Chargers are at a crossroads. After firing Brandon Staley and Tom Telesco during the season, the Bolts are looking for the next great head coach and general manager pairing. If the Chargers get this right, with Justin Herbert under center, winning the Super Bowl becomes a reality.

The most prominent name connected to the vacant Chargers head coach job is Jim Harbaugh, who just won the National Championship with the Michigan Wolverines. Harbaugh has been flirting with a jump to the NFL for years and at last, the stars are aligned for him to triumphantly return and coach one of the best quarterbacks in the sport.

As great as it looks on paper, it is not going to be easy for the Chargers to hire Harbaugh. Not only is the team going to have to pay more than it ever has for a head coach, but the Bolts have to compete with other teams that want Harbaugh's services as well. The Las Vegas Raiders are already positioning themselves as the biggest competitor for Harbaugh and that is something the Bolts need to be aware of.

The Raiders alone are enough competition for Harbaugh and thankfully for the Chargers, another perceived competitor has dropped out of the running. Harbaugh is no longer an option for the Chicago Bears, who have made the decision to retain head coach Matt Eberflus.

Chargers have one less threat to hire Jim Harbaugh with Bears bowing out

Both the Chargers and Raiders have stronger cases to hire Harbaugh than the Bears do but it was absolutely possible that Harbaugh could have surprised the NFL world and chosen Chicago (like how Sean Payton surprised the world by choosing the Denver Broncos).

After all, the future in Chicago is bright with the team having the first overall pick in addition to the team's own pick. Whether the Bears keep Justin Fields or end up taking Caleb Williams, Chicago is right around the corner of being a very good football team.

Plus, like with the Chargers and Raiders, Harbaugh has ties to the Bears. Harbaugh was drafted by the Bears in the first round of the 1987 NFL Draft and spent seven seasons in Chicago. With the NFC wide open in the future, Harbaugh certainly could have talked himself into the Bears job.

But alas, that is not a threat for the Chargers. Chicago decided to fire most of its offensive coaching staff and keep Eberflus around. Whether or not that is a mistake will play out through the course of the 2024 season.

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