Bowman is not the best coverage corner around but Sunday he displayed the secondary’s best closing speed to the ball and surest tackling.
Bostic is a sideline-to-sideline monster who can cover the deep middle but his major flaw as a young player is an inability to shed blocks.
Baltimore ran the ball on two of their final three plays in regulation and both of those runs were stopped due primarily to the efforts of Conte. He is starting to piece together something of a coherent safety. I’d also add that Conte had PERFECT coverage on Dallas Clark when Clark converted fourth-and-four with three minutes to go in regulation. Clark’s special catch prevented Conte from being celebrated as a hero.
The criticism surrounding Peppers this season has been about diminished skill, not diminished effort. Peppers was hell to deal with Sunday in both the run and pass game.
LANDON COHEN (replacing Paea)
Cohen simply isn’t an NFL-caliber defensive tackle. He was blown off the ball for sixty minutes.
Bears need to sacrifice what Woot might provide on the outside to continue his development inside. He is a potential difference maker at three-technique. He is an average-at-best defensive end.
If nothing else, Bass made the signature defensive play of the 2013 season thus far.
Bears have responded to the Lance Briggs injury by spending a majority of games in two-linebacker set, pass-look sets; limiting Greene’s snaps. Greene is a downhill linebacker. A hitter. I’d like to see him used more.
I was bullish on Anderson early in the season but his performance Sunday mirrored his performances over the last six games: workmanlike and unspectacular. There are no moments when you pause the tape and wonder, “What number was THAT?” Also, early in the season Anderson was deployed on tight ends quite often. With the move to more two-backer sets that job has moved elsewhere (usually the safeties and Frey).
The most underrated defensive play of the game was Jennings’ wonderful coverage on Tandon Doss in overtime. Covering the slant on third-and-medium is historically difficult for these Bears corners. Jennings delivered at one of the game’s most pivotal moments.
Lost. If you get a chance to re-watch the Ray Rice touchdown run, keep an eye on Wright. He literally walks into the line of scrimmage and takes himself out of the play. I didn’t see one truly positive moment from Wright Sunday.
My rule about a nickel corner: the less you hear his name, the better. Frey’s work is not an issue for the Bears.
The ability is there for Cheta to become a consistent pass rusher but his unabated strip sack of Flacco was more flukish than anything else. When McClellin returns, Cheta won’t see the field much (if he’s even active).
I didn’t see anything to report.