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New Orleans Saints-Chicago Bears Connections

Read through the connections between the New Orleans Saints and the Chicago Bears

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Player Connections

New Orleans running back Pierre Thomas* **prepped at Thornton Fractional South (Lansing, Ill.) HS and then played at Illinois from 2003-06.

*Bears tackle Jermon Bushrodwas a fourth round draft pick of the Saints in 2007 and played for the club for six seasons, where he was selected to two Pro Bowls.

Saints outside linebacker Martez Wilsonand defensive end Glenn Foster *also played their college career at Illinois. Wilson prepped at Simeon Career Academy, while Foster also prepped in the Windy City at Mt. Carmel HS.

*New Orleans tackle Zach Strief played at Northwestern from 2002-05.

*Bears running back Matt Forteprepped at Slidell HS and starred at Tulane from 2004-07.

*Chicago safety Craig Steltzis a Metairie native who prepped at Archbishop Rummel HS before starring at LSU from 2004-07. [internal-link-placeholder-0]

*Chicago cornerback Charles Tillmanwas a four year starter at Louisiana-Lafayette.

*Bears running back Michael Fordprepped at Leesville HS before playing college ball at LSU.

*Chicago tackle Jordan Millsprepped at Assumption HS (Napoleonville) before attending Louisiana Tech.

Saints tight end Benjamin Watsonand Bears cornerbackTim Jennings *were college teammates at the University of Georgia.

New Orleans nose tackle John Jenkinsand Bears defensive endCornelius Washington* were also teammates for the Bulldogs and played on the same defensive line.

Saints cornerback Keenan Lewisand Chicago defensive tackleStephen Paea *were teammates at Oregon State.

Saints quarterback Luke McCownis the younger brother of Chicago signal-callerJosh McCown*.

New Orleans cornerback Chris Carrand Bears running backMichael Bush *were teammates with the Oakland Raiders.

Saints inside linebacker Curtis Loftonand Chicago wide receiverEric Weems *were teammates with the Atlanta Falcons.

New Orleans outside linebacker Junior Galetteand Bears tight endSteve Maneri *were college teammates at Temple.

Coaching Connections

*New Orleans Head Coach Sean Paytonis a Naperville, Illinois native and played QB at Naperville Central HS. He earned a communications degree from Eastern Illinois, posting 10,665 passing yards as a three-time AP All-American. Payton played in the Arena Football League with the Chicago Bruisers and briefly with the Bears in 1987. He was inducted into the Eastern Illinois Hall of Fame and has his number retired. He also tutored quarterbacks for a year at the University of Illinois Payton has a sister and niece who live in Skokie.

!*New Orleans Special teams coordinator Greg McMahonis an Eastern Illinois graduate who served on the coaching staff in Charleston for one year and later spent 13 years on the staff at the University of Illinois working with special teams, tight ends, and wide receivers.

*Chicago Head Coach Marc Trestmanassisted Payton in training camp in 2007.

*Bears Offensive Coordinator Aaron Kromerspent the past five seasons with the Saints, serving as the running backs coach (2008) and offensive line/running game coach (2009-12).

*Chicago Defensive Coordinator Mel Tucker served as the defensive backs coach at LSU in 2000.

*Bears Defensive Quality Control Coach Chris Harrisstarred at the University of Louisiana-Monroe where he ranked fourth in career tackles and third in career interceptions.

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