Bear Down: We Need A Leader
With Danny Trevathan and Akiem Hicks out with injuries, who will step up as the leader of the Bears defense?
Nearly a week removed from the nasty elbow injury that Danny Trevathan suffered, he has officially been ruled out for the Bears’ week 11 game against the Los Angeles Rams. Other than that, there has been no official word on how long he will be out. Injured reserve is an option, but if that is the case, it will end his season. There are still too many questions up in the air at this point.
The first question is a tough one. What do the Bears do with Trevathan at the end of this season? He will surely want to come back; he loves this organization. What would the cost look like though? Another factor to consider is that the Bears will have to make a choice on another middle linebacker as well. That brings us into the next question.
How will Nick Kwiatkoski play in the wake of this news? He has been on the field a little bit this season. Last week, he played like a mad man, making tackles left and right. However, he does have two weak areas — speed from sideline to sideline and lacking coverage ability. Will Pagano be able to work around this?
An even bigger question remains: who takes over as the vocal leader and truly rallies this defense together? Trevathan will be a huge loss for the defense and on top of that Akiem Hicks is still out for a few more weeks. If Hicks was still playing, he would slide right into that role and have all of his teammates playing at a high level with tons of energy. So who will it be?
Well, It won’t be Khalil Mack. He is more of a lead-by-example player who prefers to remain quiet. That’s totally fine because he makes other players around him better. Could it be Hicks’s replacement, Nick Williams? We know he has tons of energy and he is always looking to make that impact. How about the guy who has played beside Trevathan for a year and a half, Roquan Smith? This might be a possibility. He was a first-round pick for a reason. Smith is a great player in the middle of the defense who could really cement his name as an outstanding all-around player if he steps up.
The last name in this conversation is a player who was being compared to some legends last season. That player is Eddie Jackson, but he has been very quiet in 2019. This is the perfect time for him to pick it up and play at an even higher level for his brothers that can’t do it. From the safety position, Jackson can see how everything is set up and get everyone in the right spot. He also has the ability to cover the whole field from that spot. There are very few safeties that could ever do that. So, Eddie Jackson, do you want to be great? Be the leader this defense needs.
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