No Jalen Carter no problem for the Chicago Bears
The Chicago Bears defensive lineman's stat of 125 tackles in college went right by my eyes. How could I miss that? In reference, those numbers are extremely high for a defensive tackle:
- Jalen Carter 83 tackles
- Calijah Kancey 91 tackles
- Mazi Smith 88 tackles
- Keeanu Benton (4 years) 81 tackles
I am not claiming Dexter will be a great interior defender because he beat all those players out at tackles. The tackles showcase how impressive Dexter is while being the last man off the ball. The 20 pressures in 2022 and eight quarterback hits in 2021, combined with his slow get-off, show how he could become a great defender in the future.
If Dexter can figure out how to watch the ball and jump on the offensive lineman quickly, the pass rush moves and counters are readily available because he uses them all the time due to being late to the party. Dexter might be like me. In high school, as a receiver, I would run a route just as shown on paper. If the coach wanted a five-yard slant. I would run five yards, then break at a 45-degree angle to the inside and run.
There was no wiggle or setup of the route. Just straight and cut while using my athletism to get open. Dexter could be a guy who needs the coach to break it down for him. If he learns to get off the ball, the Chicago Bears will have a better version of Deforest Buckner. It is easier said than done.