The Chicago Bears haven't been much of a blitzing team in recent seasons.
They tend to send four or fewer pass rushers about 75 percent of the time. I'll be interested in seeing how frequently they send added pressure against San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who is making his first regular-season start against Chicago on Monday night.
Week 10: Kaepernick vs. Rams D
As the chart shows, Kaepernick hurt St. Louis with his scrambling in Week 10 when the Rams sat back in coverage.
The Bears might be content letting Kaepernick run the ball, figuring they'll get a few big hits on him and possibly knock out the football. Cornerback Charles Tillman does lead the NFL with seven forced fumbles. Blitzing also could carry appeal if it forces Kaepernick into inaccurate throws. The Bears lead the NFL in interceptions with 19.
Chicago sent five-plus rushers a season-high 44 percent of the time against Houston in Week 10, according to ESPN Stats & Information.
Texans quarterback Matt Schaub completed 4 of 11 passes for 35 yards and an interception against the Bears' added pressure. He completed 11 of 15 attempts for 60 yards with one touchdown and one pick against four or fewer rushers.
The Bears and Texans played that game in rough weather conditions. That gave both teams added incentive to run the ball. The weather in San Francisco is mild, but both teams are without their starting quarterbacks. They'll have every reason to emphasize the ground game. More on that in a bit.