LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman gave embattled defensive coordinator Mel Tucker a public vote of confidence Wednesday, this despite the unit ranking No. 26 in total defense, No. 27 in points allowed, No. 31 in rushing defense and No. 23 in passing defense in Tucker's first year on the job.
Trestman cited key injuries on defense when evaluating Tucker's effectiveness. Entering Week 11, the Bears will be minus six projected starters (Lance Briggs, Charles Tillman, D.J. Williams, Henry Melton, Kelvin Hayden and Nate Collins) -- defensive end Shea McClellin is questionable with a pulled hamstring -- when they face the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday at Soldier Field.
"I can tell you, Mel's done an amazing job in my opinion," Trestman said. "He has been consistent with the guys in terms of his passion, the way he's teaching. He's a positive guy. I thought as I talked to the team on Monday, I thought our defense played well enough for us to win under unusual circumstances because of the situation of having so many players out that gave our team a chance to win. I think that starts with Mel, and our staff getting the guys ready, continuing to work with them to try and improve.
"Are we where we want to be? No. We're always trying to get better. But I think he's done an outstanding job in the classroom. On the field he's excellent, and I think he's done a great job of being on the field and managing the team for the last couple of games on the field. It's very impressive to watch."