Thursday, December 7, 2023

Trevis Gipson Reveals Why 2023 Will Be His Big Comeback


Trevis Gipson looked like a young player poised for a breakout season in 2022. He’d had seven sacks the year prior while playing a position he was never a great fit for. The arrival of Matt Eberflus meant he’d shift back to 4-3 defensive end, which he always felt fit his style the best. His expectations were high going into the season. It certainly started well. Gipson dropped Aaron Rodgers twice in Week 2 against Green Bay. Nobody, least of all him, could’ve expected he would go the next 13 games without another sack.

Yet that is what happened. It was a baffling string of weeks filled with frustration. Gipson spoke to Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune and vividly recalled five moments just off the top of his head where he had sacks that slipped through his fingers.

“Every single one of them,” Gipson said. “Miami Dolphins, I had an open one waiting for me on Tua (Tagavailoa). Buffalo Bills, Josh Allen, I missed two. Against Philadelphia I missed one. Shoot, even against the Lions the second time we played, I missed one that was right there. Close but not close enough.”

The ultimate humiliation was seeing Jaquan Brisker, a safety, finish with more sacks than him.

However, time gave the fourth-year player a chance to reflect. Upon reviewing the film, he began to realize that the downturn in production may have been a blessing in disguise. It forced him to watch his tape more carefully. That is when he reached a realization.

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“It was humbling, man,” Gipson said. “Having the success I had my second season, I thought it was all on the way up. But that’s not how it went.”

Those struggles irked Gipson.

“But I’m appreciative now,” he said. “It may sound crazy, but I am appreciative for how it went because it exposed some of the weaker spots in my game last year that I can dial in on now.”

The Bears seem to think Trevis Gipson isn’t a lost cause.

If they did, they likely would’ve been far more aggressive hunting for help at edge rusher. Recent reports suggest the team is leaving the door open for him to rebound. If he does, they are fully prepared to offer him a contract extension. That is how much Eberflus and GM Ryan Poles seem to like him. They must’ve seen the same things on tape he did. His regression had nothing to do with a lack of effort or a sagging work ethic. It was more about technical issues mixed with a position switch.

His body should be reconfigured to a defensive end type now. He should know the defensive system far better and what his responsibilities are. Together with what should be a significantly improved run defense thanks to bigger and stronger defensive tackles, it should maximize his opportunities to get after the quarterback. Motivation won’t be a problem. The humiliation of last year, combined with the looming shadow of his contract, make this a do-or-die scenario.


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Jun 8, 2023 8:21 am

Bill. I don’t go by PFF. How many times did we see a QB naked boot leg to his side wide open only to see him chasing the fake? We were the worst team vs the run last year and he wasn’t a true starter either. PFF combined with him not even being a true starter doesn’t do anything for me. We rarely ever heard his name last year. 6th best rusher is a highly flawed stat. Again I hope he proves me wrong, but nobody will convince me that we shouldn’t upgrade that position which in turn will limit… Read more »

Jun 6, 2023 6:00 pm

I’m excited about the new DT’s. Still want another proven DE though- even if just a rotational guy so we can keep trying younger players.

Jun 6, 2023 2:14 pm

Bigtime push from the D-Tackles and the double teams will have to shift inside and leave Gipson a bunch of 1-on-1 opportunities. I think Poles wants to see if these you Defensive Ends might still be the guys to get it done. We will know for sure after 2023. With two first round picks in 2024 we can fix the D-End spot pretty easily if Gipson and Robinson still struggle.

Jun 6, 2023 11:47 am

I read somewhere that Travis Gibson was the fifth most double teamed pass rusher in the entire league, that too when it’s unexpected can deflate your sack & pressure numbers. Here’s to a bounce back season.

Dr. Melhus
Dr. Melhus
Jun 6, 2023 10:50 am

Gator Joe: Yes, it’s a passing league, but you have to stop the run first. If a team could consistently get 4 yards a carry, every time they ran the ball, they would never pass, just march it down the field for a touchdown every drive. Defensive linemen have a saying, “you earn the right to rush the passer by stopping the run.” So don’t neglect run stopping, it’s important.

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