3 favorable matchups for the Cardinals in Week 13 vs. the Bears

(Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images) Robert Alford
(Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images) Robert Alford /
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Arizona Cardinals
(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Markus Golden #44 /

Arizona’s pass rush vs. Chicago’s quarterbacks

Opponents have combined for 37 sacks against the Bears in 2021, averaging 3.36 sacks per game. Overall, the Bears are on pace for allowing 57 sacks total in 2021. And now, they’re facing a Cardinals pass rush tied for eighth in the NFL with 29 sacks.

The Cardinals are also eighth in the league in blitz percentage at 30.5. They are also 11th in quarterback knockdown percentage at 10.0. On Friday, the Bears gave the starting nod to backup Andy Dalton. And Dalton has shown in recent seasons he does not fare well against strong defenses.

Despite posting better numbers and his quick decision-making ability than Fields, Dalton still has seen his fair share of struggles since he led the Cincinnati Bengals to the playoffs five seasons in a row. He has posted a quarterback rating below 90 each season since 2017, and his yards per pass attempt has not encroached 7.0. His record in that timespan? 26-41.

Even more alarming, Dalton’s sack rate only hovered above five percent once between 2011 and 2015. Since 2016, his sack rate has yet to drop below five percent, sitting at 5.1 percent in 2021.