The Chicago Bears are having a rough time seeing guys in action because of injuries but they still are feeling comfortable about their defensive and offensive when it comes to improvement. One of the reasons that they feel better about their defense is because of the play of defensive tackle Mat Toeaina.
Larry Mayer has posted an article at the Bears’ website titled “Toeaina quietly moving up depth chart at defensive tackle.” As Mayer reports Toeaina was only in five games in his first three seasons with the Bears. However as Head Coach Lovie Smith says “…he got early time last week (against the Raiders) and he’ll get the same this week (against the Cardinals).”
Toeaina is 6’2″ and weighs 308 pounds so he definitely has the physical presence to crash through the offensive lines of opponents and so far he has impressed not only Head Coach Smith but Assistant Head Coach and Defensive Coordinator Rod Marinelli.
Marinelli prefers to go with a strong four-man pressure rush in trying to get to the quarterback as opposed to doing a lot of blitzing. Toeaina fits into that scenario.
How will the Bears do against the Arizona Cardinals this week? The Bears are 0-2 after the first two weeks.
As I said in another article I don’t think they will fare very well and I really don’t think they would if it were a regular-season game. The Bears in conjunction with the four-man rush play a Cover-2 pass defense. The Cardinals have reasonable quarterbacks but the real killer is they have Larry Fitzgerald as a stellar wide receiver. The Bears have yet to show me in this preseason that they can keep consistent pressure on the quarterback while covering wide receivers. They don’t seem to have the speed and they don’t seem to be very well coached. This is the same problem that occurred in the past.
In fact if you go back to the Super Bowl year against the Colts the Bears had played very spotty defense throughout the season and it ultimately cost them the Super Bowl.
Certainly Matt Toeaina is a nice addition to the Bears defense. I don’t think they are going to do well though. Not only does the team still look shaky but they have a very tough schedule.
We’ll just have to see-I hope I’m wrong.
Chicago Bears Website; Larry Mayer; “Toeaina quietly moving up depth chart at defensive tackle”