Another week, another loss, another poor performance from the Bears defense. Most teams inevitably struggle against Tom Brady and the Patriots offense, but this felt different. The game plan that defensive coordinator Vic Fangio employed was head-scratching, at best. The Bears best pass rusher, Khalil Mack, is clearly not 100% on that ankle he rolled against Miami.
The thing that really sticks in my craw is the fact that Fangio, for some inexplicable reason, decided to use his best pass rushers (Mack and Leonard Floyd) in coverage and his best coverage linebacker (Roquan Smith) on the bench. This was not a pretty game and it wasn’t a fun one to watch tape on. There wasn’t much pressure to choose from, so this will be another short Rush Report.
Week 6 vs the Patriots
Sack 1 - Third quarter 8:29 (3rd & 1) - Roquan Smith
The Bears only sack of the game came on a blitz (surprise, surprise). It was a good thing it was a sack too, watch the safeties on this play. Both Adrian Amos and Eddie Jackson are completely clueless on this play. The key here is the double-team on Akiem Hicks. Aaron Lynch is lined up way outside to the left, gets a chip from the tight end, and the running back has him in pass protection. This allows the right tackle to double Hicks. Roquan Smith swings around the opening created between Lynch and Hicks and has a free shot at Brady. At the nose tackle spot, Bilal Nichols beats his man at the snap of the ball and likely would have had this sack if not for Smith, but I am giving this one to Roquan but the assist goes to Nichols for sure.
Pressure of the Week
Fourth quarter 6:31 (3rd & 2) - Roy Robertson-Harris
One of the only other pressures that was worth discussing led directly to Kyle Fuller’s interception. Once again, the Bears brings 7-rushers and force Brady to make a poor throw. The Bears are in a 4-3 alignment here with both outside linebackers showing blitz. Danny Trevathan comes on a delayed blitz as well, but he doesn’t factor into the play. The Patriots use an interesting protection scheme here, but ultimately it fails. The left tackle takes Mack, the right guard picks up Eddie Goldman, which leaves Roy Robertson-Harris initially unblocked. The running back is supposed to take RRH, but his set is too wide and RRH gets pressure quickly. The center is what was interesting here as Floyd was initially unblocked as well, but the center pulls to the right and picks up Floyd. Who says pressure doesn’t lead to interceptions?
Here’s how I have the individual* Rush Report after week 7.
Khalil Mack - 4
Team Sacks - 3
Akiem Hicks - 2
Roquan Smith - 2
Roy Robertson-Harris - 1.5
Aaron Lynch - 1.5
Eddie Goldman - 1
Danny Trevathan - 1
Sherrick McManis - 1
SINO - 1
Bilal Nichols - 0.5
Bryce Callahan - 0.5
*These numbers do not reflect a players official statistics.