Frustration continues to mount for the Chicago Bears offense after another disappointing performance on Sunday. They managed only 17 points with two brutal turnovers in the 4th quarter by Justin Fields. Play calling was erratic and uninspired. There wasn’t much to feel good about aside from a great performance from wide receiver D.J. Moore. Upon closer inspection, that isn’t entirely true. This game marked an improved performance from rookie right tackle Darnell Wright, who again seemed to thrive in one-on-one situations.
The 10th overall pick was credited with five pressures allowed last week. A tape review showed he played better than that. This time, the numbers and film match up. There was only one play where Wright was soundly beaten. It involved star Buccaneers pass rusher Shaq Barrett pulling a frankly ridiculous hesitation rush that would’ve beaten most veterans. Aside from that, Wright was sound all afternoon. In fact, he faced a one-on-one block 18 times in the game and didn’t surrender a single pressure.
The Chicago Bears should be happy with Wright’s progress.
He’s faced a pretty rough situation to start his career. Facing the Green Bay Packers led by Rashan Gary last week and then the blitz-happy Buccaneers the next is a true trial by fire for any young tackle. Wright handled it with more poise and determination than you’d expect from a rookie. It won’t get any easier moving forward. Kansas City is up next with Chris Jones and company. Then, after Denver, it’s the loaded Washington Commanders front in Week 5, Danielle Hunter in Week 6, and Maxx Crosby in Week 7.
Looking at that lineup, it gets easier to understand why the Chicago Bears prioritized drafting Wright over help along the defensive line. They had to do everything in their power to protect Justin Fields. Yet even with the rookie’s improving play, the quarterback has already taken 10 sacks this season. The offensive line hasn’t been perfect, but there are too many instances of Fields holding the ball longer than he should. He’s making life harder on Wright, which makes the rookie’s play the past two weeks more impressive.