By Kyle Raugh
Man, what a whirlwind of an offseason the Bears have had. Being a fan that wasn’t alive in 85’ when the Bears were dominating the NFL, this year tops any year that I have followed the Bears. It’s unlike any transformation of a franchise that I have tracked. I have fully bought into an Eagles, Rams transformation for the Bears franchise, and I fully think we can pull off what the Eagles did in two years under Pederson with our guy in Nagy.
Injecting Khalil Mack into the Bears defense has major implications on the potential of this franchise. Our once thin OLB position now has the potential to be one of the best units in the league. What a turn around. Last year, the Bears 10th rank defense will rise to one of the most dominant units in football due to many different things from 2017-2018. Let’s get down to business.
In this article, Kyle will dive into the impact of Khalil Mack on the Bears defense.
Last year, the Bears defense lacked star potential. There was no one that kept an offensive coordinator up at night. Mack will demand all of an OC’s attention every game day. There isn’t a tackle that can go 1 vs. 1 with him all game and keep his QB clean. No way.
Iron Sharpens Iron
Mack’s dominance lead offense’s to focus a lot of time on him. This opens opportunities for other players on Vic Fangio’s defense, particularly Akiem Hicks, Leonard Floyd, and Roquan Smith. I’m most excited for Floyd to get less attention because less double teams & exposure means less injury risk, a recipe for a breakout season. Smith has already been given the title as the Bears next great linebacker and now gets to play in the shadows of Mack, which takes pressure off of a rookie that had a roller coaster of an offseason. He is a lucky guy. Mack will clear lanes for the rookie from Athens and will help him adjust to the NFL.
Weight off of others shoulders
Bringing Mack to Chicago lifts the burden and extremely high expectation off of the offense. Before Mack, when the Bears offseason came to mind, it was all about the capital they put into boosting the offense. It was the main focus, mounting pressure on Trubisky to take the Bears to the next level.
Now, all eyes are on a new superstar at outside linebacker, making the offensive overhaul seem like an afterthought while giving him an elite defense to watch go to work from the sidelines. And going against this defense at Halas Hall will push Trubisky to new heights.
Last but not least, this is management showing everyone that it’s time to chase the Lombardi Trophy. We have an elite, top five defense with a rising offense that’s going to take the league by storm. Expect a Philadelphia Eagles/Los Angeles Rams like jump by the by the Bears this season, even while competing in the hardest division in football. On his last chance to the right the ship, Ryan Pace pushed all his chips in. Now its time to cash in on our biggest bet yet.