The Vikings do not blitz often, but when they do, they get home. Expect them to throw blitzes at the Chicago Bears to confuse Mitch Trubisky
The Minnesota Vikings are invested in their defensive line. Danielle Hunter leads the team with 11.5 sacks and with Everson Griffen, Tom Johnson, and Sheldon Richardson, they like their chances of getting home with four pass rushers. With that in mind, they do not blitz much. However, that may be a strategy they go to against the Chicago Bears.
When they do blitz, they blitz effectively. That shows in Harrison Smith and Mackensie Alexander, two defensive backs combining for six sacks. These are two smaller, but faster and physical players who can get after a quarterback. When you give them an opening to the quarterback, the pounce.
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Anthony Barr and Eric Kendricks stand over the center and left guard, taking the attention of Rosen. They do not blitz often, and these two are showing blitz on that side. However, as Rosen gets ready to snap the football, the middle cornerback of a trips bunch on the other side, Mackensie Alexander shifts his eyes to the quarterback.
The ball snaps and Kendricks and Barr sprint over the right side. Meanwhile, Alexander and rookie Holton Hill both blitz from the slot. This takes an experienced defense to pull off but also takes an experienced quarterback to recognize. The blitz paid off as Rosen had no idea what was coming.
A similarly executed blitz is linked here against Matthew Stafford. The idea of the blitz is the same. Harrison Smith shows pressure off of the left tackle, and Matthew Stafford sets his protection. From there, Alexander creeps in from the other side. Eric Kendricks blitzes with Alexander, causing four guys to come on the right side, with Stafford setting his protection to the left. Alexander once again has the speed to squirt free and make the play.
They were even able to get to Aaron Rodgers. Check the play linked here. Barr and Smith show blitz to the right side this time. However, as the ball is snapped, Barr sprints to the left side as Kendricks and Alexander come in. The defensive end plays contain to get the left tackle to open a huge hole, and the right guard has to choose between the linebacker or the corner. .The corner gets home.
Mitch Trubisky has improved every week so far this season. However, if there is one question with his game, it is still how fast he can process defenses under pressure. He has still made questionable decisions and has struggled to pick up blitzes or coverages when he does not get the look he thought that he would pre-snap.
The Minnesota Vikings are very likely to test that with the chemistry they have on defense to open up the playbook. This will be the ultimate test to see where Trubisky stands regarding his growth in digesting the nuances of the NFL.