After playing at Glenbard West High School and the University of Iowa, Matt Bowen spent seven seasons in the NFL as a strong safety with the ...

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Matt Bowen

Matt Bowen

Scouting the Bears

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Bears' defensive transition a work in progress

Bears' defensive transition a work in progress

August 15, 2015

Who's the "guy" on this Bears defense? I'm talking about that stud creating constant chaos, the one player opposing teams have to specifically game plan for.

  • New Bears defense may have great schemes, but it needs some great players

    June 20, 2015

    The Bears new-look defense took the field for minicamp last week at Halas Hall with a barrage of blitzes, multiple fronts and different sub-package personnel.

  • Ryan Pace begins building solid foundation with first Bears draft

    May 3, 2015

    The first draft class under new general manager Ryan Pace gave us a look into the team building process at Halas Hall with the Bears targeting players who bring major upside, scheme flexibility and competition to head coach John Fox's evolving roster.

  • Here are 6 to watch carefully as Bears develop their draft board

    February 24, 2015

    The numbers generated from the NFL scouting combine don't tell the entire story on prospects, but the testing in Indianapolis is still a major part of the grading process for the NFL draft.

  • John Fox means the return of smash-mouth football to the Bears

    January 17, 2015

    Fifteen extra minutes in the cold tub Monday morning. Maybe 20. Slowly get in and let that ice water crawl up to your neck. Just try to find some relief for a beaten-down, worn-out body.

  • Bears can try to get Matt Forte ball in some space with rail concept

    December 27, 2014

    With the ball in the red zone, quarterback Jay Cutler and the Bears can use the pick route to create a one-on-one situation for running back Matt Forte on the quick rail concept versus the Vikings man-coverage scheme.

  • No surprise Lions will try to get ball to Calvin Johnson on seam route

    December 20, 2014

    Calvin Johnson once again can go to work on the Bears secondary if Mel Tucker's defense fails to identify the pre-snap alignment of the Lions wide receiver and the route concept designed to beat the top of the Cover-3 defense.

  • Bears season crashes at intersection of distrust and poor performance

    December 18, 2014

    When the wheels start to come off the team bus in an NFL season, the good teams make corrections, fix the problem and continue to buy into the coach despite signs of adversity.

  • Saints defense provides many targets for Bears quarterback Jay Cutler

    December 14, 2014

    The Bears should prepare for the Saints defense Monday night to send pressure in passing situations with Rob Ryan's unit disguising coverages in the secondary to set some traps for quarterback Jay Cutler.

  • Cowboys' Dez Bryant gives Bears' Kyle Fuller second tough week in a row

    December 3, 2014

    The Bears can continue to use five-man zone pressure on third-down situations against the Cowboys, but they need to win one-on-one matchups on the edge and take away the intermediate throwing lanes to limit quarterback Tony Romo and receiver Dez Bryant.

  • Bears safety Ryan Mundy key to taking away Lions post patterns inside 35

    November 26, 2014

    The Lions and quarterback Matthew Stafford can challenge the Bears Cover-3 defense in the strike zone (20-35 yard line) by running the double-post concept to target Calvin Johnson while also creating an opportunity for rookie tight end Eric Ebron on the wheel route.

  • Look for Jay Cutler to take some shots downfield against Bucs' Cover-2

    November 22, 2014

    Jay Cutler and the Bears can take some shots down the field to target the top of the Buccaneers Cover-2 defense by creating vertical opportunities out of a 3-by-1 formation on the "Seattle" concept.

  • Jon Bostic must read keys right to protect middle

    November 15, 2014

    The Vikings and offensive coordinator Norv Turner will test the eye discipline of the Bears defense with packaged plays that allow rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to target the middle of the field off the mesh point read.

  • Bears can set 'trap' for Packers run defense

    November 7, 2014

    The Bears and Matt Forte once again can attack the Packers defensive front seven with the trap schemes in Marc Trestman's playbook to produce numbers in the run game.

  • Patriots' double tight end alignment trouble for Bears

    October 25, 2014

    The Bears defense will have to play with technique and discipline in their Cover-2 shell inside the deep red zone to limit quarterback Tom Brady and the Patriots tight end talent.

  • Bears can target receivers deep against Dolphins

    October 18, 2014

    The Bears and quarterback Jay Cutler can continue to push the ball downfield to wide receivers Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery by using max protection and targeting the Yankee route versus the Dolphins.

  • Bears must watch Falcons' Devin Hester in flat

    October 11, 2014

    Wide receiver Devin Hester isn't a primary target in the Falcons game plan with Julio Jones and Roddy White on the field. However, quarterback Matt Ryan can get the ball to Hester in specific concepts that cater to the skill set of the former Bears returner.

  • 5-man blitz could be effective against Packers

    September 27, 2014

    The Bears can lean on their core Cover-2 and Cover-3 coverages versus Aaron Rodgers and the Packers on Sunday at Soldier Field. However, the ability of Mel Tucker's defense to dress up sub-package pressure is key to getting off the field on third downs while creating turnover opportunities.

  • Bears can take advantage of Jets' blitz

    September 21, 2014

    The Bears and quarterback Jay Cutler have to prep for the Jets pre-snap disguise and zero-pressure looks they'll see Monday night when they take on Rex Ryan's defense at MetLife Stadium.

  • Bears' Stephen Paea must withstand 49ers' 'wham'

    September 12, 2014

    The 49ers offense under coach Jim Harbaugh can reduce the formation, create blocking angles at the point of attack and use the "wham" (trap) scheme to open up a running lane for Frank Gore versus the Bears 4-3 defensive front Sunday night in the first game at Levi's Stadium.

  • Containing Bills' packaged plays critical for Bears

    September 6, 2014

    The Bills' packaged plays will test the Bears defense under coordinator Mel Tucker on Sunday at Soldier Field, with stress on second-level run/pass keys because of the multiple reads within the scheme.

  • Marshall, Jeffery can help Bears exploit defenses

    September 4, 2014

    The Bears offense should produce at a high level again this season under coach Marc Trestman because of the size, talent and formation flexibility of wide receivers Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery.

  • 4 takeaways from Bears preseason so far

    August 24, 2014

    Preseason tape in the NFL doesn't tell the entire story because of limited game plans that focus on individual technique while coaches experiment with concepts on both sides of the ball.

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