Defensive LineLE Israel Idonije, 3T Tommie Harris, NT Anthony Adams, RE Julius Peppers, DT Matt Toeaina, DT Marcus Harrison, DE Corey Wootton, DL Henry Melton
The late-blooming Idonije's eight sacks equaled his career total from his previous six seasons in the league, and he was also stout against the run. Harris flashed toward the end of the season and in the first postseason game, but that's about all he's done for three years now. Adams is the classic run stuffer and underappreciated, but he fills an important role. Peppers is simply a difference maker. He's an elite pass rusher who creates opportunity for others and draws holding penalties in bunches. Toeaina started 10 games after beating out Harris by Week 3, but the job was given back to Harris in the final month.
LinebackerWLB Lance Briggs, MLB Brian Urlacher, SLB Pisa Tinoisamoa, SLB Nick Roach, WLB Brian Iwuh, MLB Rod Wilson, MLB/SLB Hunter Hillenmeyer
Briggs made it to his sixth straight Pro Bowl, while Urlacher was voted to his seventh after a three-year hiatus. They are as good a 1-2 combination as there is in the NFL. Tinoisamoa is active and can still run well, but he missed all or part of seven games with a knee injury that required arthroscopic surgery. Iwuh is more of a special-teams player, as is Wilson, but all three of the backups fit the Bears' mold of undersized Cover-2 linebackers that can run.
Defensive BackLCB Tim Jennings, RCB Charles Tillman, SS Danieal Manning, FS Chris Harris, NB D.J. Moore, CB Zack Bowman, CB Corey Graham, S Major Wright, S Josh Bullocks, S Craig Steltz
Jennings is undersized but feisty, while Tillman has the size and strength to match up with bigger receivers and provide run support. Tillman had five interceptions and was third on the team with 101 tackles. Manning has amazing athleticism but lacks instincts and tends to arrive a step late at times. Harris has a reputation as a big hitter, but he has done a better job of playing the ball this season and tied for the team lead with five interceptions. Moore is just 5-9 and 183 pounds, but he tackles like a much bigger player and he picked off four passes.
Special TeamsK Robbie Gould, P Brad Maynard, KR Danieal Manning, PR Devin Hester, LS Patrick Mannelly
Gould is the fifth-most-accurate kicker of all time (85.5 percent) even though he had a rare slump this season, missing three field-goal attempts in a row. But he missed just two of his other 27 attempts, and his kickoffs have never been longer. Maynard isn't much on distance, but when he's on he's still one of the better directional kickers. Hester is like Roy Hobbs: the best there's ever been. His 17.1-yard average was the highest in NFL history for anyone with 30 or more returns, and he took three to the house.
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2010 Season in Review: Defense
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