The Bears defense held in check an up-coming explosive offense in the Detroit Lions; can they do it against a potentially more explosive offense in Dallas? In my opinion I think they have a good chance to put up a similar performance against a surprise struggling offense in the Dallas Cowboys. Last Sunday we saw the line shut down the Lions rushing attack, we saw Peppers, Adams, and Harris get pressure on Detroit QB's, and though Bowman had help over the top, he kept Johnson quiet for most of the day.
Although Dallas' Offense has been struggling, there is that fear that they can put it all together this Sunday, especially with Colombo and Kosier expected to be back. Austin is a beast, and is a handful for any NFL defensive back. Roy Williams, while a disappointment so far, is still a NFL Veteran, and will have the chance to have a big game with the extra attention that will be on Austin. Dez Bryant is still learning the ropes, but it's only a matter of time before Bryant has a break out game. All of that, and I haven't yet mentioned Jason Witten and the triple threat in the backfield with Barber/Jones/Choice. Yes there's a good chance the Bears D can put on a good performance against the Cowboys, but at the same time I'm fearful that this might be the game where Romo and the boys break out of its offensive slump.
Either Anderson or Idonjie have to raise their games up this Sunday and take the pressure off Julius Peppers. The guy can’t do it all himself, and that’s where Anderson comes in. Anderson played well defending the run, but was quiet against Gosder Cherilus last Sunday. The Bears need his outside pressure this Sunday to force Romo into some turnovers. He will be going up against a solid RT in former Bear Marc Colombo, but with Colombo coming off a recent off-season knee surgery, the door is open for Anderson to take advantage of a veteran who might be rusty.
The defensive tackles will have to play a huge role in both run support and pass rush. Adams will have to carry on his good performance Sunday against one of the better Right Guards in the league in Leonard Davis. With Adams, he has to try to beat Davis with quick first steps to quickly disrupt the running game and pressure Romo out of the pocket into either Anderson or Peppers. Toenia will also be counted on to collapse the pocket and keep Romo off balance.
Kosier is one of the most underrated left guards in the league. Having said that, when Tommie Harris is at his best he can dominate just about anybody he’s lined up against. Kosier won’t beat you with power and quickness, but with proper footwork and hand technique. Tommie needs to be disruptive off the line of scrimmage and prevent Romo to not step into the pocket and deliver the throw. This is one of those games where Tommie needs to dominate in order for the Bears defensive line to put their mark on this game.
Doug Free was having his share of troubles against Andre Carter last Sunday night. He’s going to run into a world of trouble against Julius Peppers this Sunday. The presence of Peppers might be enough to neutralize the weapons out in the backfield and TE Jason Witten. I expect Lovie to flip Peppers at the LE spot against the rusty Marc Colombo also.
Bowman won round 1 against Calvin Johnson, now in the middle of the ring for Round 2 is Miles Austin. If you were looking for a week where Bowman will have many opportunities to make plays on the ball it would be this Sunday. Romo is going to be looking to Austin way more often as he’s their most establish receiver. It’s important for Bowman to keep Miles in front of him and not let him get behind him. Miles is a big play receiver that can hurt you all over the field, but I will take my chances with the shorter routes than the deeper routes. Bowman will also get his dose of Dez Bryant when the Cowboys go to 3 WR sets. With Bryant, Bowman will need to capitalize on some rookie mistakes Bryant will make throughout the course of the game.
Tillman has had plenty of success against Williams in the past going back to the days when Williams was a Lion. Both players know each other's strengths and weaknesses, but I am riding with our guy in this match-up. Make no mistake it’s possible Williams can have a good game against Tillman in the secondary because of his familiarity against Tillman and the scheme.
CB D.J. Moore vs. WR Miles Austin
We will see plenty of Miles Austin in the slot this Sunday when they go to 3 Receiver sets. I really don’t like this match-up at all for D.J. Moore, as Austin has the size advantage, speed, and athleticism in his corner against Moore. Moore will need to count on the pass rush to pressure Romo into making some ill advised throws as Moore's strength is making plays on the ball.