The Bears had three players named as second-teamers on the 2021 NFL AP All-Pro roster: linebacker Roquan Smith, edge rusher Robert Quinn and punt returner Jakeem Grant.
Smith’s selection marks his second consecutive second-team All-Pro nomination, despite not having been voted into the Pro Bowl either year. He finished fifth in the NFL with 163 total tackles, which is the second-highest single-season total in Bears history. He also finished fourth among off-ball linebackers with 12 tackles for a loss, and he also tallied 3 sacks, an interception returned for a touchdown and 3 pass deflections. Smith also showed up in more advanced statistics, leading the league with 27 pass tackle stops and finishing second among linebackers with 19 run stuffs.
Quinn makes his second career All-Pro appearance, having been named a first-team All-Pro back in 2013 with the Rams. He put together a record-breaking year in 2021, becoming the single-season sack leader in Bears history with 18.5 sacks. His total finished second in the league behind first-teamer and presumptive Defensive Player of the Year T.J. Watt. Quinn also finished sixth in the league in tackles for a loss. After a disappointing first season in Chicago which only saw him tally 2 sacks, the veteran bounced back in incredible fashion this year, adding an All-Pro selection to go along with his third career Pro Bowl appearance.
Grant received 20 votes as a punt returner, as well as garnering one vote as a kick returner. He was one of just two players to return a punt back for a touchdown in 2021, and among qualified returners, he had the second-most yards per punt return at 11.9. Along with Quinn, Grant complements his previous Pro Bowl selection with an All-Pro nomination. He was also named a second-team All-Pro with the Dolphins as a punt returner in 2020.