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Chicago Bears Sackwatch 2018: Week 1 vs Green Bay Packers

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NFL: Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin-USA

After being one of the most sacked quarterbacks as a rookie with a sack percentage of 8.6, I expected Mitchell Trubisky to see that number decline in his second year as the starting quarterback for the Chicago Bears. Pocket awareness is something that takes time to learn at the NFL level, and most young QBs struggle with it. He’s still very early in his career, but his awareness on Sunday Night was a problem.

One possible reason; he’s in a new offense on a very big stage and the moment may have gotten the best of him against the Green Bay Packers.

Another possible reason; he’s just not very aware of his surroundings.

By the end of the 2018 season we’ll know which it is.

If you’re new to my Sackwatch series, it’s me breaking down every sack the Bears allow. The idea was first floated to me by WCG’s resident snark, Kev H, back in the Mike Martz years. And as someone tired of seeing casual fans blame the offensive line for every sack allowed, I figured this would be a good way to show how much more goes into pass protection.

Each week I’ll start the article taking a look back through the years, then I’ll break down each game’s sack, and finally I’ll keep a running tally the sacks allowed.

Enjoy...

Sackwatch After Week 1:

2010 Sacks - 4 (Martz)
2011 Sacks - 5 (Martz)
2012 Sacks - 2 (Tice)
2013 Sacks - 0 (Trestman)
2014 Sacks - 2 (Trestman)
2015 Sacks - 2 (Gase)
2016 Sacks - 5 (Loggains)
2017 Sacks - 4 (Loggains)
2018 Sacks - 4 (Nagy)

Now let’s get down to the nitty gritty...

Sack 1 - First Quarter 2:49 - Kentrell Brice
This was neat play to break down because it’s run from a formation I used back in the day. In my terminology this is, Blue right, Z-Mo, fake 23 lead, max protect. Only the X and Z receivers go out for a pass, so the fact that the Packers got pressure is troublesome, but the pressure unfortunately complimented each other perfectly.

Eric Kush (left guard) loses his block on Mike Daniels (#76), but Howard is there to clean up. Tight end Dion Sims (lined up on the right side) gives the edge up too quickly to linebacker Reggie Gilbert (#93). Fullback Michael Burton was moving to that side to help, but it was a tough angle considering how deep Gilbert got.

The Packers only sent five initially, so seven on five should have been a win for the Bears, but Sims’ losing his block so quickly spooked Trubisky. He stepped up, but Daniels was there after beating Kush. With the first pressure sending him directly to the second pressure, Trubisky took off.

By running out of bounds for zero yards, this sack goes to safety Kentrell Brice, who was closest to him, but I think the sack allowed should go to the two players that ultimately lead to the scramble, Half to Kush and half to Sims.

Sack 2 - Second Quarter 6:49 - Team
This one was immediately called Butt Fumble 2 on Twitter after it happened, and I really hope that doesn’t stick. Now if it was Butt Fumble 2, Electric Boogaloo, that’d be a different story.

It’s an empty backfield on 4th and 4, and Trubisky thought he saw a lane to get the first on his own. The lane closed, and he couldn’t react quick enough. He collided with his right tackle and dropped the ball. This sack is on Trubisky.

Sack 3 - Fourth Quarter 8:29 - Mike Daniels
This is another run for zero yards that is officially called a sack. I hate that rule. A sack is a negative play, and zero yards isn’t negative. On this play, the Bears pass protection creates a nice pocket for Trubisky, but he seems to anticipate a breakdown that isn’t there and he takes off.

With experience he hopefully stays in the pocket and scans the field if this situation arises again, but right now he may trust his athleticism more than he trusts his new scheme. This one is on Mitch.

Sack 4 - Fourth Quarter 1:06 - Nick Perry
On this sack, Trubisky starts drifting to his right before he has to. My first thought was he sensed the pressure from Perry off the left edge, but if that was the case, then why stand still after Perry beat left tackle Charles Leno?

Leno got his head out in front of his feet too much when Perry tried going back outside, and that’s a mistake. But Trubisky had time to throw, and he didn’t feel the rush at all.

I don’t want to let Leno completely off the hook for getting beat, so a half a sack allowed to him, but Trubisky is getting the other half.

I was curious, so here’s what Pro Football Focus said about all the sacks and pressures.

Mitchell Trubisky was sacked four times, and he was at fault for all four, at times fleeing the pocket too early or drifting in a way that took away his blockers’ leverage. None of the offensive linemen allowed more than two pressures, and Trubisky was ultimately under pressure on 11 of his 43 drop backs.

Individual Sackwatch after week 1:

Mitchell Trubisky - 2.5
Dion Sims - .5
Erik Kush - .5
Charles Leno - .5