You didn’t have to be an old-time Chicago Bears fan to be left wanting more out of the Bears’ defense last year. They let up the league worst 161.4 yards rushing per game. Marc Trestman was quick to identify the problem, but he wants to completely reverse the trend, making defense the Bears identity once again.
“We’re a team that wants to play — even offensively — with a defensive mentality,” Trestman said, via ESPN New York. “There’s a way to play football in Chicago, and that’s to be tough and physical, set a vertical edge, violent shed and run to the football. We’ve got to practice that way every day to be that team we want to be. We’re not there yet. We know that. We’re trying to get there because that’s the way every team plays in the National Football League. The best defenses play tough and physical. There’s a lot of different ways to win, but you seldom win a game [in which] you don’t win the line of scrimmage. There’s seldom a game you win where you can’t at least somewhat run the ball effectively and stop the run.”
So he wants to play defense on offense? Things are getting confusing. He’s trying to speak like a meat and potatoes coach, it seems.
But what he’s saying is a tall — or perhaps rotund — task for this Bears roster which has yet establish any sort of consistency in run defense. Luckily, Marc Trestman preemptively put the Bears money where his mouth is, signing Jared Allen, Lamarr Houston and re-singing Jeremiah Ratliff earlier this offseason. Though they are elite players, they do not change the entire complexion of the Bears defense. They have quite some time before we can call them the Mosters of the Midway again.