Bears Depth Chart: Outside Linebacker

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports /
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Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports /

Player to Watch – Leonard Floyd

This was an easy one as Floyd has one skill that no other OLB on the Bears roster does and that’s an explosive first step off the ball. Floyd has the potential to bring a new dimension to the Bears pass rush and could increase the effectiveness of the front seven if teams have to adjust for Floyd’s speed off the edge.

I expect the Bears to work Floyd into the lineup slowly and put him in the positions to succeed with simple assignments at first, giving him the chance to focus on what he’s best at… getting to the QB. Floyd should see a lot of time on 3rd down and in sub-packages and hopefully can provide the Bears with 6-8 sacks as a rookie.

A productive rookie season from Floyd will make the whole defense better. It will give the rest of the OLB group more 1-1 matchups and also make things easier on the secondary, who won’t have to cover as long if the OLBs are disrupting the opposing QBs rhythm. Floyd and the rest of his OLB teammates are a key component to the Bears defense this year and if they improve the defense as a whole has a chance to be a top-15 unit.