5 differences with Sean Desai as Chicago Bears defensive coordinator

(Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images)
(Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images) /
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The Chicago Bears change from Chuck Pagano to Sean Desai has been notable. Unfortunately for Desai, he has had injuries throughout the core of his defense. Beyond that, he has already played the likes of Tom Brady, and Aaron Rodgers. Still, while the defense has been up and down, the one thing that is true is that Desai has made changes, and has made the defense his.

At the bye week it was a good time to look back at what the defense looked like and what it does now that Sean Desai is calling the plays.

5. More 3 Safety Looks

The NFL is becoming a nickel and dime league and Sean Desai is following that lead. Both Vic Fangio and Chuck Pagano loved to live with two linebackers on the field. Pagano started to see the issues with that when Danny Trevathan slowly lost steam.

The Bears replaced Trevathan with Alec Ogletree but the big difference has been that while Roquan Smith never leaves the field, the second linebacker does far more often under Sean Desai.

In fact, the second linebacker is playing 8% less with Desai. That is a pretty big shift. To put this into context, DeAndre Houston-Carson has been the third safety often, and has played four games in which he saw 15% or more of the snaps in that role this season. Since 2018, Deon Bush has four games in which he played that much as a third safety.

The reality is that they are getting their third safety on the field much more. When you add in that Tashaun Gipson, Eddie Jackson and Bush have all missed time, you can assume that Desai would have played three safety looks even more if he could have.