Are the Chicago Bears easing Robert Quinn into more work, or is this the role they had in mind for him?
Through three weeks Robert Quinn has played 57 snaps for the Chicago Bears. The easy caveats are that Quinn missed on full game, and in another he recorded a stip sack. On a per snap basis, no Chicago Bears fan is complaining.
However, as Robert Quinn has now played two straight games in a rotational role, it is worth wondering whether or not this is a trend or a blip as he eases into shape.
On one hand, he clearly was not 100% when he missed Week One. The Bears know they need a healthy Quinn, so to throw him into the fire in Week Two may have been dangerous. Beyond that, Quinn went from 25 snaps in Week Two to 32 in Week 3. He has not played over half of a game yet, but is increasing his role.
On the other hand, we knew coming into the signing of Quinn what his job was. He was not going to be a coverage edge rusher, like Leonard Floyd. To date, he has not dropped back into coverage once. Leonard Floyd had 25 snaps in coverage through three weeks last year. They are not playing the same role.
On top of that, Quinn gives little against the run. He was poor in Dallas in this area, as he sold out to rush the passer. With that in mind, only nine of his 57 snaps this year came against the run. That is with eight snaps coming against Atlanta. 48 of his 57 snaps are as a pass rusher, and 24 of his 32 snaps in week three were of that variety.
When looking at the Bears snap counts, they have a clear plan.
On Sunday, the faced 40 drop backs, and 68 plays overall. With two edge rushers per play, that is 80 drop backs, and 136 snaps.
Mack played on 40 pass rush snaps, and 61 overall. Quinn played on 24 pass rush snaps and 32 overall. That leaves 16 pass rush snaps, and 43 overall snaps.
Barkevious Mingo and James Vaughters combined for 13 pass rush snaps, and 44 overall snaps. The Bears faced the run 25 times. That means 50 run stopping snaps. Mack played 21, and Quinn played eight. That leaves 21 snaps, while Mingo and Vaugthers had 23 snaps against the run.
The split between Mingo and Vaughters was even on Sunday. They both played similar run, pass and coverage reps. With that in mind, they both played limited pass rush snaps, and played most of their snaps against the run and in coverage. These two are platoon players for Robert Quinn. Considering Quinn has never been great against the run or in space, it is worth wondering how many more snaps Quinn will see as the year goes on.