Just when the Sackwatch was trending into some rarefied territory, the Chicago Bears give up four sacks to the Detroit Lions. Not having Mitchel Trubisky definitely hurt the sack numbers, but I’m not about to blame all four on backup quarterback Chase Daniel. Watching live, there were a few times when I noticed that Trubisky’s mobility would have helped, but we need to understand that Trubisky is one of the most athletic quarterbacks playing today. I had no idea he’d be that kind of player coming out of North Carolina, but that’s who he is.
I was pleasantly surprised with how efficiently Daniel ran the offense. This was only his third career start. but he played like a poised veteran, which is exactly why the Bears made him one of the highest paid backup QBs in the league.
Let’s check the numbers...
Sackwatch after 11 games
2010 - 41 Martz
2011 - 27 Martz
2012 - 35 Tice
2013 - 17 Trestman
2014 - 27 Trestman
2015 - 19 Gase
2016 - 22 Loggains
2017 - 27 Loggains
2018 - 23 Nagy
And let’s break down the sacks allowed...
Sack 20 - First Quarter 5:55 - Romeo Okwara and Damon Harrison
When a quarterback sets up, then has time to shuffle his feet a bit while drifting forward before taking off, that’s usually a good indication that the defense had everyone covered. The Bears had five guys running routes, and the Lions gave Daniel no where to go with the ball.
The pass protection holds up long enough against the four Lion defeners, but when Chase Daniel decides to run, he’s contacted by left guard James Daniels who was looking for work. The good coverage brings me to a Sacks Happen conclusion on this play.
Sack 21 - Third Quarter 10:28 - Ezekiel Ansah
Here’s another play where Daniel was caught after trying to run. This officially went down as a sack for zero yards, so I don’t understand why this can’t go in the books as a run for zero yards.
I can’t really fault left tackle Charles Leno Jr. on this play, even though he was the man blocking Ansah. Leno pushes his man past the pocket, but Ansah just keeps working the circle until he’s free. Daniel tried to escape to his right, but that hole closed up on him, so he changed direction to go left and was caught. Check out linebacker Jarrad Davis (#40) hiding behind his nose tackle presnap. It looks like he was spying Daniel, which was probably a wrinkle put in to counter Trubisky. The Lions only rushed three, with the spy coming late, and they made a good play on the sack. I’ll give this one a Sacks Happen too, just because Daniel was close to getting a yard on his scramble.
I do think Trubisky avoids both of the first sacks allowed.
Sack 22 - Third Quarter 5:58 - Damon Harrison
“Snacks’ Harrison isn’t known for his pass rushing, but he had a sack and a half on this day. This was another zero yard sack, but I’m going to give this one to the QB. Daniel pulls the ball off the run/pass option, and he sets up to throw the bubble screen to his left, only he doesn’t pull the trigger.
The only reason I have for him not throwing is he was reading the wrong wide out. The motion man, Anthony Miller, was the one bubbling out to accept the throw, but Daniel could have been looking at his tight end Trey Burton. If he would have hit Miller in stride, Miller would have had two blockers in front against two Lion defenders. The misread led Daniel to taking off and he ran into the sack.
Sack 23 - Fourth Quarter 7:00 - Glover Quin
This one hurts, because Daniel was hit just as he was about to uncork a deep pass to a wide open Anthony Miller. Check him out to Daniel’s left...
This was another play where the Bears’ pass protection held up nicely, but the Lions just made a good play. They sent two blitzers around Chicago’s right side and the second one got home. Right tackle Bobby Massie took the defensive end to his outside shoulder and running back Jordan Howard picked up the first blitzer. The second blitzer, safety Glover Quin, came behind the first and it was timed so the Bears couldn’t slide protection to help.
The Lions blitzed on Chicago’s left side too, and Leno passed his man off to the inside while getting the blitzer. Chicago did everything right, but sometimes sacks happen.
Individual Sackwatch through 11 games:
Sacks Happen - 9
Mitchell Trubisky - 5
Kyle Long - 2
Bobby Massie - 2
Charles Leno Jr. - 2
Chase Daniel - 1
Bryan Witzmann - 1
Dion Sims - .5
Eric Kush - .5