With the Bears’ defense finishing the season ranked near the bottom of the NFL, head coach Lovie Smith has decided Brian Urlacher and company need a little inspiration next season. So the Chicago coach has hired Chuck Norris, the martial arts master and star of the movie Sidekicks, be the team’s next defensive coordinator.

“Did you see us out there this season?” Smith asked at a press conference. “We obviously need to man up. This team requires the hefty dose of rough and rugged masculinity that only someone like Chuck Norris could provide.”

Defensive players for Chicago were happy with the move.

“Yeah, he seems like a pretty bad dude,” cornerback Nathan Vasher said. “I didn’t know too much about Chuck before Lovie told us the news, so I Googled him. According to one Web site I found, he can run around the world so fast that he can punch himself in the back of the head. I’d like to see Bob Babich or Ron Rivera do that.”

Norris, who was recently campaigning for Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, is already getting the Bears motivated for next season by screening a marathon of his Missing in Action series.