Another five sack game in the week 17 match-up against the Minnesota Vikings and the Chicago Bears’ Sackwatch will approach Mike Martzian levels of sucking.
While the sack numbers in those days were because of the insistence on deep drops with less than stellar pass protectors, the sacks this year have been from a number of different reasons.
Many have been on the defense sending a blitz and the Bears having no quick outlet to throw the ball. That’s a big no-no in my book. If a D brings more than you can block, that falls on the QB making a quick read, but if he has no where to go that’s a scheme issue. I’d rather a quarterback be forced to throw short of the sticks than take a sack. At least by getting the ball in a players hands, that gives him an opportunity to make a play and pick up the first down.
Sackwatch after 15 games
2010 - 50 Martz
2011 - 42 Martz
2012 - 43 Tice
2013 - 29 Trestman
2014 - 39 Trestman
2015 - 29 Gase
2016 - 25 Loggains
2017 - 38 - Loggains
Sack 34 - First Quarter 9:59 - Justin Currie
This was a well timed blitz by the Browns in bringing the double DB blitz off of Chicago’s right side. Right tackle Bobbie Massie took the first defensive back and right guard Cody Whitehair took the defensive lineman. That left a hole for Justin Currie to attack and he got to Mitchell Trubisky for the sack.
The Browns were showing a blitz on the Bears’ left side too, so running back Jordan Howard was helping out on that side. Sometimes sacks happen and this was just a good play by Cleveland defensive coordinator Gregg Williams.
Sack 35 - Second Quarter 10:13 - Myles Garrett
I liked this defensive play design as well. The Browns blitzed two linebackers from the interior, while dropping the linebacker that was in a threatening position on the left edge off into coverage.
Left tackle Charles Leno had to protect his outside, but he then quickly came back inside when that defender dropped into zone. Leno ended up matched up with Myles Garrett, who attacked Chicago’s left B-gap.
Left guard Bradley Sowell spied the blitzers coming at him so his focus was there, which made this a tough block for Leno, but one Leno has to make. If Leno’s man didn’t get home, another Brown would have picked up the sack, but Garrett won the race, so this sack is on Leno.
EDIT: Every so often former Bears’ center Olin Kreutz drops some o-line knowledge, and I’m always ready to learn. In this tweet he blames Sowell for not catching the call from his center.
5 sacks against CLE 1 was on the OL. Grasu points 52 back has 58. Cross means switch assignments. Sowell should stay on Garrett. pic.twitter.com/is6330iKJP— Olin kreutz (@olin_kreutz) December 28, 2017
Grasu took one linebacker and the other crossing linebacker was supposed to be handled by the running back, meaning Sowell had to stick with Garrett.
I’m changing this sack allowed to Sowell.
Sack 36 - Second Quarter :48 - Jamar Taylor and Joe Schobert
Another sack allowed and yet another blitz by the Browns. In fact, on four of the five sacks the Bears allowed, the Browns were blitzing. This time the nickle blitzer (#21 Jamar Taylor), got home the same time as the stunting Joe Schobert (#53).
Both started on Chicago’s left edge, but I think left tackle Leno did his job by staying with Myles Garrett (#95). Garrett attacked that B-Gap again and Schobert looped around behind him. Sowell (LG) was caught completely off guard by the stunt and was in no position to pick him up. The unblocked Taylor is the responsibility of Trubisky to hit a hot read, but with Schobert up the middle and no receiver presenting himself as a target, Trubisky is screwed.
Since this sack was split, I’ll split it too. Half to Sowell and half to sacks happen.
Sack 37 - Third Quarter 9:04 - Larry Ogunjobi
The Browns only rushed four, and the 305 pound Ogunjobi overpowered center Hroniss Grasu. He managed to get Trubisky’s shoelace and take him down for the sack.
It’s very possible that Grasu was inadvertently tripped by Cody Whitehair, but he still allowed his man to get under him and force him back. This one is on Grasu.
Sack 38 - Fourth Quarter 10:18 - J.Burgess Jr.
At first I was irritated that Trubisky slid himself into a sack instead of simply chucking the ball out of bounds and saving the three yards. But then after a twitter discussion, I realized that he made the smart play.
Since this was a busted screen pass, Trubisky could have thought that his offensive lineman may have been downfield, so a pass could have resulted in an ineligible man downfield penalty. He also may have been thinking ‘keep the clock running,’ with about ten minutes left in the game.
What ever he was thinking, I can’t fault him for sliding, so this is a sacks happen as well.
Let’s go to the individual Sackwatch through 15 games
Sacks Happen - 12
Mitchell Trubisky - 4
Charles Leno - 3.5
Bobby Massie - 3.5
Bradley Sowell - 3.5
Hroniss Grasu - 2.5
Mike Glennon - 2
Josh Sitton - 2
Jordan Howard - 1.5
Kyle Long - 1
Cody Whitehair - 1
Benny Cunningham - 1
Zach Miller - .5