Jaquan Brisker stood out last season in the middle of a rebuilding season for the Bears.
Heading into an exciting sophomore season, ESPN projects Brisker could be a Pro Bowl candidate. Bill Barnwell placed Brisker in the "Starters to Pro Bowlers" section in his story predicting break-out players.
"In what amounted to a teaching season for coach Matt Eberflus with the Bears, Brisker was the new coach's most promising pupil," Barnwell wrote. "The rookie second-rounder did a little bit of everything in his 15 starts, as he intercepted a pass, produced a team-high four sacks, racked up five tackles for loss and knocked away a couple of throws. Playing down toward the line of scrimmage most often, he also missed only 6.3% of his tackles all season, according to Pro Football Reference.
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"Some of Brisker's misses were conspicuous -- and injuries slowed him as the season wore on -- but there's an undeniably exciting skill set here. The hope is that he ends up looking something like Chicago's version of Jamal Adams as a player who can use his instincts, timing and toughness to make game-changing plays. Brisker can be a cornerstone piece for Chicago as early as this season if he stays healthy."
Brisker, as Barnwell explained, shined last season. Across Eddie Jackson, the Bears opted to use the fast and physical Brisker in a multitude of ways. He played in the box, deep in coverage and blitzing the quarterback.
His ball hawk abilities stood out. There never seemed to be a play where Brisker wasn't in the camera shot. He has exceptional instincts and physicality. His 104 tackles and team-leading four sacks are a testament to those qualities.
Ryan Poles took a shot on Brisker high in the 2022 NFL draft, instead of using the selection to address more pressing needs on the roster. Though, Poles' decision is paying off for the Bears and the once-Penn State safety.
In 15 games last season, Brisker recorded one interception, two passes defended, one forced fumble and recovery, 104 tackles and four sacks, which led the team.
The question of Brisker's health is somewhat puzzling. He endured bumps and bruises but missed just two games with a concussion late in the season. He played in 100 percent of the snaps possible for his starts on the field.
The last time a Bears safety notched a Pro Bowl bid was Jackson in 2019, the second of his career.