Howard, Skuta Signings Add Reliability, Depth
If you haven’t read Andrew Dannehy’s piece on why the Bears defense will improve in 2017, you should. It is a detailed explanation of why this unit will continue its ascent up the rankings and join the top shelf of the league’s defenses.
These two signings are about one thing: rush defense. For all the improvement the Bears defense made in 2016, they did not improve at all as a rush defense. A lot of this can be placed at the feet of injuries. Trevathan and Goldman were horribly missed for much of the season and the rush defense went flat into the toilet once Freeman was suspended.
Howard and Skuta are early-down, plug-and-play guys. And they are here to help the Bears get their rush defense to under 100 yards per game.
Morrissey on Changing Landscape in Chicago
Rick Morrissey in the Sun-Times wrote an interesting piece about how the Chicago sports landscape is so vastly different than it was five months ago. Here is what he had to say about the Bears:
In the time it took NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to read a name off a card April 27, the Bears went from bad to the most talked-about team in sports. They traded the third overall pick to the 49ers, who had the second pick, and chose North Carolina quarterback Mitch Trubisky. And then, bedlam. General manager Ryan Pace was a brave man who followed his convictions or a complete dimwit.
Everything came under scrutiny: Trubisky’s lack of college experience, the wisdom of giving up two third-round picks and a fourth-round pick to move up one spot in the draft, Pace’s extreme secrecy leading up to the team’s shocking decision, whether the Bears had any competition for the 49ers’ pick and, I don’t know, if Trubisky manually brushes his teeth or goes electric.
The Bears took a bold step that could change their fortunes. They also distracted a populace.
Vibe: Whatever this is, I can’t take my eyes off it!
Made this argument before the draft and it feels even truer now. When a team shows guts and make a big move for a quarterback it changes absolutely everything. The Bears will become a major story in Chicago and across the league during the entirety of their off-season program for one reason: Mitch Trubisky.
Hell, even I’m considering going to Bourbonnais for a few days to catch a look at the kid.