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Bears introduce Lovie Smith

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Lake Forest, IL (Sports Network) - The Chicago introduced new head coach Lovie Smith at an afternoon press conference on Thursday. Smith agreed to a four-year contract Wednesday to be the 13th head coach in franchise history, replacing the departed Dick Jauron, who was fired after the were just 7-9 in 2003 and 35-46 in his five years at the helm.

Chicago is just one of five NFL teams to post a losing record in each of the past two seasons, having gone a combined 11-21 since their only playoff berth under Jauron in 2001.

But Smith's statements at his introduction focused on another pattern of losing.

"The number one goal we'll have is to beat Green Bay," Smith said, recognizing the interstate rivalry Chicago enjoys with the , who have won seven straight matchups with the . "Almost daily we'll do something to see that that happens."

Smith joins the after three seasons as defensive coordinator of the St. Louis . Prior to the 2003 season, Smith was named assistant head coach.

In Smith's first year as an NFL defensive coordinator with the in 2001, he helped St. Louis return to the Super Bowl. New England downed the on a last-second field goal.

The native of Big Sandy, Texas also worked five seasons with Tampa Bay as its linebackers coach. Smith spent 13 years at the collegiate level before joining the .

Smith's defensive squad orchestrated one of the league's most productive units in recent memory as the were among the NFL's leaders in takeaways, defensive touchdowns, and sacks in 2003. With 40 takeaways (21 interceptions and 19 fumble recoveries) in the last 13 games of the season, St. Louis led the NFL with 46 takeaways while tying for fourth with 24 interceptions and leading the NFL with 22 fumble recoveries (five more than Baltimore’s 17).

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