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Concerns remain for the Chicago Bears pass defense

Lack of a pass rush is likely what swayed this week’s SB Nation Reacts voters.

Chicago Bears (33) Vs. New England Patriots (14) At Gillette Stadium Photo by Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Earlier this week, we asked you guys to vote about the aspect of the 2023 Chicago Bears you were most concerned with and which you were most confident in. The Bears did quite a bit to bolster their roster this offseason, but fans are still concerned about the pass defense. Fans are far more concerned about the defensive side of the ball in general, with a total of 75% of the vote falling on Alan Williams' bunch.

While Williams didn't have much talent to work with a season ago as defensive coordinator, it was also his first time in that role since 2013, so the jury is still out on him as a play caller. The upgrade on the front seven will give him more options, but the lack of a pure pass rusher off the edge is likely what swayed this vote to pass defense.

Chicago's secondary has the potential to be one of the better units in the NFL, as long as Kyler Gordon and Jaquan Brisker have a nice sophomore jump, but if the Bears can't pressure the quarterback, it may not matter.

The Bears added a bunch of free agent and rookie defensive linemen to the returning Justin Jones, Trevis Gipson, and Dominique Robinson, but there isn't a sure-fire double-digit sack artist on the roster. DeMarcus Walker (28 years old) signed a 3-year deal worth $21 million, and the Bears are counting on him to get after the quarterback. He just had his career-high of seven sacks a season ago, so he's either an ascending player that has never found a good scheme fit (until now), or he's just a solid football player on his fourth team in as many years.

If Walker can't build off his 2022, or if Gipson doesn't get back to his 2021 production, or if Robinson can't scratch some of his athletic potential, or if there isn't another free agent edge added, then the Bears may not improve on last year's league-worst 20 sacks.

Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NFL. Throughout the year we ask questions of the most plugged-in Chicago Bears fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to participate in the weekly emailed surveys.

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