The Bears defense will focus on containing Vikings star running back Adrian Peterson Sunday at Soldier Field, but that won’t be the unit’s only objective.
“The running game is going to be huge, but we also have to get pressure on the quarterback, and we know that,” said defensive coordinator Mel Tucker. “That’s been a big point of emphasis already this week. We’ve got to generate the pass rush with the front four. It’s going to be something we’re really going to work on this week.”
The Bears defensive line produced little if any pressure last Sunday on Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton, who completed 26 of 33 passes for 282 yards while being sacked only once.
“The biggest thing is it starts with getting off the ball,” said defensive end Corey Wootton. “I didn’t think we did that as a whole and we have to continue to strive to do that. We’re a talented bunch, but we didn’t really show the way that we had been doing all through preseason and camp.”
Tucker is confident that the defense will play better in all areas Sunday, beginning with a formidable pass rush against Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder.
“I feel like you’re going to make your most improvement from the first game to the second game,” Tucker said. “That’s what we’re looking to do. Whether it’s in the pass rush, eliminating big plays or tackling, getting off the field on third downs, we’re looking for huge amounts of improvement. It starts in practice and it starts in the meetings.
“I was pleased with what happened [Wednesday]. Guys came out to work. I have a lot of confidence in these guys, I really do, that they can execute at a high level and we’ll get them to do that.”
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