Chicago Bears Film Review: This player must step up for Bears to succeed
The Chicago Bears offseason saw a bit of drama from Roquan Smith, who demanded a trade after contract negotiations broke down. Now, Smith is playing for a new deal, and through two games, he is not doing a great job of earning it.
There are two plays that resulted in touchdowns against the Green Bay Packers, both of them saw Smith making a sub-par play on the football.
Roquan Smith needs to step up for Chicago Bears
In the play below he takes a shot at getting into the backfield. However, you can see how slow he is, and he immediately takes himself out of the play. A small chip by Allen Lazard seals that he is gone.
If Smith wants to take that chance he has to be much faster, and we used to see Smith be able to anticipate and strike a bit quicker.
Then, in the play below he decides not to attack upfield, but this time to beat the running back to the edge. However, he does a poor job here as well. He takes a bad angle and is not nearly fast enough to get in the way of the pulling lineman. He had to move around some traffic, but the lineman was not moving any slower than Roquan Smith as he backpedals into the endzone with Aaron Jones.
Roquan Smith has three stops per PFF, and Nicholas Morrow has seven. Morrow was signed and given playcalling duties because he was supposed to free up Smith to be more of a playmaker. Instead, Morrow is not only calling the plays but also being more of the playmaker.
There is talk about moving Smith back to the MIKE, but that is punishing Morrow for nothing wrong. Smith is supposed to be the bigger playmaker of the two, and in the WILL role he has more reign to make plays.
The issue is not about his role, but more about him looking a bit slow, or being a tick late in his anticipation when that used to be the best skill he had. Smith will never be in a better position to rack up stats and make a bunch of money, but two games he has not done that.