Bears Roquan Smith Diagnoses & Destroys This Screen

By Will Cinelli on Jun 24, 2021

Each Thursday here on the FirstDown PlayBook Coaches Community website we feature a breakdown of personnel and technique. This is provided by our friends over at The Scouting Academy who are our go to experts in this field. If you want to learn more about becoming a football scout just tap on their logo!


The name of the game at the linebacker position is mental processing. Those that can key and diagnose quickly are the ones that help their team win.

On this particular play, Chicago’s Roquan Smith is being sent on a blitz. But he quickly reads that the Panthers are running a screen and slows up. As he reads screen, he works to mirror the RB and fights the efforts of the guard to pin his outside shoulder.

He sheds the block, then uses quickness and a dip of the shoulder to evade the block and make the tackle on what would have been a big gain without Smith’s efforts.

This is a result of lots of film study during the week and the ability to take what he learned on film and in practice and translate it to the game. 

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