Can Montez Sweat play even better? Hall of Fame DE explains untapped potential in his game


Can Montez Sweat play even better? Hall of Fame DE explains untapped potential in his game originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

Montez Sweat was everything the Bears hoped he would be when they traded for him at last year’s deadline. He instantly raised the profile of the pass rush and ended up leading the team with six sacks, despite playing in only nine games.

Hall of Fame defensive end Dwight Freeney thinks Sweat can be even better, though.

Freeney joined the Under Center podcast on Monday and explained the untapped potential that he sees in Sweat. Right now, Sweat is known as a powerful rusher with blazing speed. The blend of speed and power around the outside is tough for offensive linemen to handle. But Freeney believes if Sweat can develop a devastating inside move to complement his outside speed, then he can become recognized as one of the top pass rushers in the game.

“They’re already scared to death of the speed and his athleticism,” Freeney said. “I think he can do whatever he wants from that perspective. But once he really develops a great counter off of his outside speed, speed to power, he’s going to be a handful. He obviously already was (a handful), but there’s levels, there’s definitely levels to how good or great you can be at the pass rush or the defensive end position.

“If you just want to be a good player then you’ll have your one move and you’ll get your 10 sacks maybe, if protection, they decide not to pay attention to you as much. But when you start to be recognized as one of those guys, you’re going to have to develop a counter move.”

The way Freeney sees it, pass rushers need multiple options like star pitches need offspeed pitches. If a pitcher can only throw fastballs, batters who are good enough to catch up can anticipate the pitch for an easy hit. But pitchers can fully dominate when they’re able to mix in effective off-speed pitches to keep batters off balance. If an offensive tackle knows a pass rusher…

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Author : NBC Sports Chicago

Publish date : 2024-04-02 22:40:36

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