The Bears defense was noticeably gassed in this game, and that was to be expected. Coming off a grueling 3-game stretch with games at home against the Lions, the Vikings, and then traveling to Detroit to play the Lions again—all in 12 days mind you—it wasn’t a shock to see the Bears defense a little flat.
The Lions also came out with their 3-step passing approach, which worked to a degree, but obviously, the Bears still won the game. All of this is to say that this was a more pedestrian Rush Report than we are used to, but that doesn’t mean there weren’t good plays to look at. But you didn’t come here to listen to me ramble, you want some sacks, so let’s get to it!
Week 11 vs the Vikings
Sack 1 - Second quarter 3:05 (3rd & 8) - Roquan Smith
Roquan Smith is quietly turning himself into a heck of a football player. This is a simple A-gap blitz with a delayed blitz from Danny Trevathan once the running back stays in to block Smith. Smith allows the back to start to engage, side-steps him, gives him a quick shove and is on quarterback Matthew Stafford, seemingly all in one motion. Watch Khalil Mack to see why he’s so important. He was triple teamed on this play...
Sack 2 - Second quarter 0:01 (4th & 1) - Deon Bush
This is a brilliant play by Vic Fangio in this situation. It’s obviously the last play of the half, and Stafford is going to need time to heave the ball down to the goal line. Instead of sitting back and letting the play come to him, he sends 7 rushers at Stafford, knowing that the Lions will have to leave the tight end and running back into block, leaving 3 receivers to throw to. Bryce Callahan, Sherrick McManis, and Deon Bush all blitz, along with Trevathan trying to get home. The head-scratcher here is the right guard, who inexplicably doubles Roy Robertson-Harris with Bush showing blitz the whole way. Great design and execution by the Bears. Oh yeah, and Mack gets triple-teamed again...
Pressure of the Week
Fourth quarter 1:11 (3rd & 9) - Leonard Floyd
This isn’t a great pressure, but Leonard Floyd was clearly held on this play and it also appears that forces Stafford to throw to his right and into the waiting arms of Kyle Fuller. Floyd makes a lightning quick move inside and gets on the center before he has a chance to react. This leaves the center with nothing to do but hook Floyd. But Floyd does a nice job of keeping the center off-balance and getting his long arm into the throwing lane to the left side. So while this might not go down as a hit or hurry, it certainly appears to have affected the play and resulted in an interception to seal the game.
Here’s how I have the individual* Rush Report after week 11.
Khalil Mack - 7
Roquan Smith - 4
Team Sacks - 3
Akiem Hicks - 3
SINO - 2
Roy Robertson-Harris - 2.5
Aaron Lynch - 2.5
Bryce Callahan - 2.5
Bilal Nichols - 1.5
Danny Trevathan - 1.5
Leonard Floyd - 1
Eddie Goldman - 1
Sherrick McManis - 1
Deon Bush - 1
Isiah Irving - 0.5
*These numbers do not reflect a players official statistics.