This may have been the worst day from the Chicago Bears pass protection this season. Not only did they give up four sacks, but the Baltimore Ravens we’re credited with eight total quarterback hits. Chicago QB Mitchell Trubisky was forced to scramble three times, and he had a handful of throwaways he was forced into.
I know most people hear “pass protection,” and they immediately think offensive line. But there’s more to it than that. The center and/or quarterback need to set protection before each play, if they set it wrong, sacks happen. The scheme is at fault sometimes. The tight ends or running backs make mistakes or get beat at times too. The quarterback can hold the ball too long, which makes it hard on the blocking in front of him. But the most important thing to keep in mind is remembering that the defense is out there trying too.
The Ravens have a talented front seven, and Baltimore defensive coordinator Dean Pees is pretty good at his job too.
Now on to the nitty gritty!
Sackwatch after 6 games
2010 - 27 Martz
2011 - 19 Martz
2012 - 19 Tice
2013 - 9 Trestman
2014 - 14 Trestman
2015 - 12 Gase
2016 - 12 Loggains
2017 - 13 Loggains
Sack 10 - Second Quarter 1:57 - Matthew Judon
This was a very good play design from the Ravens. They sent six defenders, but there were a couple stunts that flummoxed Chicago’s pass protection.
The stunt that directly led to the sack occurred on the Bears left side. The Ravens blitzed through the A-gap, then sent a stunting defender right behind the blitz. Running back Benny Cunningham picked up #57, the blitzing C.J. Mosley, because that was the immediate threat. But with Matthew Judon (#99) stunting away from left guard Josh Sitton, Sitton had no one to block.
The Ravens were showing three pass rushers to the Bears’ right, so center Cody Whitehair correctly went to his right A-gap.
The only way the Bears could have picked this up is if Cunningham left Mosely for Sitton, and waited for the stunt to come to him. But without a crystal ball telling then the stunt was coming, there’s no way for them to know.
I’ll have to chalk this one up to Sacks Happen.
But I would like to point out Bobby Massie before moving on. He allows Za'Darius Smith (#90) to get into his chest because he missed with his hand punch. Once Smith engages he has all the leverage needed to get around Massie.
Sack 11 - Fourth Quarter 9:29 - Lardarius Webb
This is another good blitz by the Ravens. Webb, lined up as the slot corner to the top of the GIF, comes through the left B-gap. Left tackle Charles Leno Jr. is engaged with a defender, as is left guard Sitton, so Webb had a free run.
Presnap, the Ravens were kind of milling about, trying to confuse the Bears as to which players would rush, and they ended up sending six again.
Trubisky was trying to unload a pass to Jordan Howard, but he hesitated — perhaps because Howard hadn’t turned around yet — and the hit caused him to fumble.
This was another good play by the Ravens, so another sack in the Sacks Happen category.
Sack 12 - Fourth Quarter 1:09 - Matthew Judon
Judon got to Trubisky again, and this is another one that’s hard to find a specific place to lay blame. But this one isn’t going in Sacks Happen.
This was a 2nd and 16, and the Bears were trying to get down into field goal range for the win. In the All-22 GIF above, I want you to keep an eye on Judon, who was rushing against right tackle Bobby Massie. Judon’s rush was initially stopped, but he worked back inside and Trubisky was flushed right into him.
In the GIF below (same play, different angle) you can see Massie lost a little leverage when Judon pulled his jersey before coming under the block. If Trubisky isn’t forced to step up, I don’t think Judon gets there for the sack. So let’s look at why Trubisky was forced off his spot.
Terrell Suggs (#55 to the right of the screen) has 119 sacks in his 15 year career, and he’s beaten a lot better tackles than Charles Leno, but he beat Leno so quick on this one that Howard’s chip wasn’t even slowing him down. Suggs caused this sack, and therefore the blame on this sack starts with Leno. Since I’m not sure if Howard was supposed to chip on this play, or if he just noticed his left tackle getting smoked and decided to help, I’ll give him half the blame as well.
Sack 13 - Overtime 8:58 - Terrell Suggs and Willie Henry
Suggs was in on this sack as well, and this time Massie is getting some of the blame. He’s pushed back, then pushed out of the way as Suggs comes under the block to the inside. But he wasn’t the only Bear offensive lineman that was manhandled. Check out right guard Kyle Long.
There’s a little glitch in the GIF, but after stopping Henry’s (#69) initial rush, Henry turns Long’s shoulders and works around the block. Either Suggs or Henry could have picked up this sack by themselves, but since both Bears were beaten, they get to share. Also sharing are Massie and Long on this sack allowed.
Individual Sackwatch through 6 games
Sacks Happen - 5
Charles Leno - 2.5
Mike Glennon - 2
Bobby Massie - 1.5
Bradley Sowell - 1
Kyle Long - .5
Jordan Howard - .5