The Denver Broncos defense was taking on a Chicago Bears offense that has been putting things together over the last few week. The Bears unit was also missing a couple of big pieces of their offensive scheme.
With that said, let us dive into the player grades.
Derek Wolfe, DE
Snaps: 59. Stats: 4 tackles, 1 sack.
For the first time on the season, Wolfe notched his first sack. It was a beautiful rip and swim that left the offensive lineman standing still, and confused. Wolfe brought pressure on a pretty consistent basis and was really good against the run.
Snaps: 34. Stats: 1 tackle.
Over the last few weeks, Williams has really regressed with his play, and it was very clear just how much against the Bears. He was unable to generate any kind of pressure and was bullied as a run defender.
Malik Jackson, DE
Snaps: 52. Stats: N/A.
Jackson was shut down for the majority of the game, both as a run defender and as a pass rusher. He failed to generate any kind of pressure, outside of a handful of snaps. Also, similarly to Williams, Jackson just found himself bullied as a run defender more often than not.
Von Miller, OLB
Snaps: 46. Stats: 2 tackles, 1 sack.
Many would say Miller was invisible, but he was one of the few who brought pressure on just about every pass rush snap. Also, the last few weeks his run defense has been suspect, but against the Bears it was strong. Still, it wasn’t great, just much improved from previous games.
Brandon Marshall, ILB
Snaps: 56. Stats: 8 tackles, 1 sack.
This was one of the best, and most complete games from Marshall all season. His pass coverage was his weak spot, but he was still quite strong there. His run defense was excellent as it has been all year basically, and he was able to generate heat on the quarterback.
Danny Trevathan, ILB
Snaps: 45. Stats: 8 tackles, 1 interception.
Like Marshall, Trevathan played one of his best, and most complete games all season. Everything was really good from Trevathan, and he continues to be a bully in run defense. Despite his smaller than average size for an inside linebacker in a 3-4 front, Trevathan takes on blocks better than many at the average, or above the average size.
Shaquil Barrett, OLB
Snaps: 36. Stats: 3 tackles.
Again, Barrett was getting the start for the injured DeMarcus Ware. He played a really solid game, but wasn’t anything special. His pass rush came and went, and was very inconsistent. He also was inconsistent against the run. However, he looked really good in coverage for a rush linebacker.
Aqib Talib, CB
Snaps: 63. Stats: 3 tackles.
There were multiple times where Talib got beat for a big gain. He just didn’t seem to have his head in the game, as there were multiple mental errors. On top of that, he got beat early in the route often, and his lack of recovery was on display all game. You can’t be slow to recover and allow yourself to be beat like Talib was.
T.J. Ward, SS
Snaps: 63. Stats: 5 tackles.
While there were a couple of miscues in coverage, Ward really played a strong game in all phases. Outside of those few mistakes in coverage, he was really strong, and of course, he was excellent coming up and helping out the run defense.
Darian Stewart, FS
Snaps: 63. Stats: 1 tackle.
After looking like he was going to be a huge pickup for the defense early on in the season, Stewart has really fallen off over the last five or six games. This was one of his worst in that time frame. His coverage was consistently suspect, and saw a lot of poor angles taken. One thing that was impressive at the start of the season was his aggressiveness, which has been missing as of late, especially in his run defense.
Chris Harris, Jr., CB
Snaps: 62. Stats: 3 tackles.
Even though Harris hasn’t really played like the best corner in the NFl this season, he has played like one of the best in the NFL. He really was able to showcase why against the Bears. His game was far from perfect, but there were a lot of positive and few negatives in all phases.
That wraps up the starters. Time to jump into the players who subbed into the game.
Darius Kilgo, DL
Snaps: 13. Stats: N/A.
After being inactive for a few weeks, Kilgo was active. He did a solid job, but hasn’t shown the flashes he did at the start of the season.
Shane Ray, OLB
Snaps: 33. Stats: 1 tackle.
This wasn’t a good game from Ray at all. He generated next to no pressure and looked lost, and bullied against the run.
Lerentee McCray, OLB
Snaps: 11. Stats: N/A.
With Shane Ray back, McCray has seen a significant drop in his playing time. When he saw action against the Bears, it was clear as to why. He just didn’t play a good game, or anywhere near a good game.
Bradley Roby, CB
Snaps: 23. Stats: 2 tackles.
Roby continues to flash, as he has all season, and like he did all his rookie year. He still makes some rookie-like mistakes, but they have consistently been getting fewer each game, and not as bad as they have been.
David Bruton, S
Snaps: 23. Stats: 4 tackles.
There were a few really bad plays in coverage from Bruton, including some over aggressive play. However, there were only a few and he played a really great game against the run.
That wraps up most of those who subbed into the game. There were three other players who subbed into the game, but none of them saw more than ten snaps. Antonio Smith saw the most with eight, Corey Nelson saw two and Todd Davis only one.
Sorry for being brief, but thanksgiving limited my time. I want to wish all of you readers a Happy Thanksgiving and hope you have, or had (depending on when you read this) a great day!
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