SI has a list up of the 10 most revolutionary defensive players in NFL history. Two Bears line backers have made the list.
There were other players who redefined the middle-linebacker spot -- like Sam Huff, Chuck Bednarik and Ray Nitschke -- but no one had the impact of Butkus. The Bears legend had the speed and drive to make plays on every inch of the field. He was a monster against the run and could cover tight ends and running backs. But more important than anything was his intensity. He played every game like it was his last -- a necessary ingredient to be a great middle linebacker. Butkus' lineage includes Mike Singletary, Ray Lewis and Brian Urlacher.
And somehow he is still overrated. Go figure!
A safety in college, Urlacher has the speed to stay close to the line and stop the run and effectively drop back in coverage, which is the key ingredient to the Cover Two defense. The defense had its roots in the 1970s Steelers, when undersized linebacker Jack Lambert redefined middle linebacker with his speed. Urlacher's unique athleticism has helped the Bears take the popular system to a new level and their defense is the gold standard in the NFL right now.