The ink is still drying on the 2010 Chicago Bears’ season and already general manager Jerry Angelo is voicing his desire to keep Lovie Smith around past the 2011 season.

A year ago, fans were calling for Lovie Smith to be fired. Now, he’s in for a contract extension.

Angelo made it clear Monday he’d like to keep the coach around after the Chicago Bears advanced to the NFC championship game. He says “our focus, our intent” is to get that done.

Smith has one year left on the extension he signed after the 2006 Super Bowl season. The Bears got back to the playoffs for the first time since then, ultimately losing to Green Bay in Sunday’s NFC championship game after going 11-5 and winning the NFC North.

Smith is 63-49 in seven seasons.

Copyright 2010 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. STATS LLC and The Associated Press contributed to this article. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

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