Monday, April 22, 2024

NFL Star Explains Why Eric Washington Is Such A Heist For Bears


The Chicago Bears knew they couldn’t repeat the mistakes they made with Alan Williams once their defensive coordinator search began. It became clear early on that he struggled to enforce the system’s core values. Effort wasn’t always high. Players weren’t maintaining their gaps. Turnovers weren’t being created. It was almost a blessing in disguise when he stepped away from the team last September. Head coach Matt Eberflus knew he had to find somebody who could be on top of those details this time around. The man he settled on was Eric Washington, Buffalo’s defensive line coach.

Former All-Pro defensive tackle Gerald McCoy is familiar with the Bears’ new coordinator. They worked together for a year in 2019. McCoy had his last productive season with five sacks and 13 quarterback hits. While the defense as a whole struggled that year, the defensive line (which Washington coached) wasn’t the problem. Five different players on that front had at least five or more sacks. McCoy told Josh Schrock of NBC Sports Chicago that people still don’t grasp how much better the Bears defense is about to get.

Washington is the antithesis of Williams.

They’re getting a teacher,” McCoy said. “They’re getting a guy who every day you might question who’s really giving the most effort, him or the players, and it’s going to be him most of the time. He doesn’t take days off. You never going to have to worry about is coach going to show up in a different mood. I don’t know what coach I’m getting today. He’s high-level at all times, and he’s on 10 at all times.

“When I say 10, not like over the top. He’s always trying to win. He might catch you in the lunchroom, ‘Hey, on this play. What is this person supposed to do?’ He ain’t even asking you about your job. It’s about somebody else’s. Because if – the term you only strong as you weakest link. Well, if there are no weak links, how strong can you be? He’d make sure that the weak links don’t exist. That’s just who he is. And I’m so excited that he got there because he’s one of those guys and they’re going to love him.”

Eric Washington holds everybody accountable.

Some coaches might be intimidated by getting on star players about not doing their jobs or not giving enough effort. McCoy and others agree Washington won’t have that problem. He will find a way to get on everybody about doing things the right way. The best part is that the advantage won’t be limited to only the defensive line anymore. His new position also allows him to carry that process to the linebackers and secondary. If his track record is any indication, this defense will be much tougher and more aggressive than it’s been over the past couple of years.

People wonder about how effective Eric Washington will be because he won’t call the plays on Sundays. That is only one part of what makes a unit successful. Calling the right plays is great, but only if the players understand how to execute. That is achieved through constant practice in the days leading up to a game. Since Eberflus will have his attention on all three phases, he will need somebody like Washington to keep the defense on task. It’s similar to the relationship Sean Payton and Pete Carmichael had for so many years. Payton got the glory, but Carmichael did much of the dirty work.

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Washington will do the same for Eberflus.


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Slip Knotz
Slip Knotz
Feb 17, 2024 10:38 pm

I am very excited to have Eric Washington. The players might be initially irritated but so what? He will help them win and that is what everyone wants!

Feb 17, 2024 3:51 pm

EVERYTHING starts with line play. That is where dynasties start. If the QB has more time to find a target, his stats will rise accordingly. And, if the defensive line gets to the QB faster, that is where mistakes will be forced. It affects everything else BEHIND them! Receivers getting open with extra time, or defensive backs getting turnovers because of line pressure on the QB is where building a team SHOULD start. We’ve all heard the battle in the trenches is where games are won or lost. Pole understands this, and outside of the QB position, it’s what he… Read more »

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