Rookie Linebacker Jack Sanborn's Season Ends With a Trip to IR

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Rookie Linebacker Jack Sanborn’s Season Ends With a Trip to IR

Chicago Bears

Jack Sanborn was looking like quite the find for the Chicago Bears. The undrafted rookie began the year fighting for a roster spot before eventually climbing up the depth chart and playing his way into the starting lineup. Sanborn moving up the linebacker ladder and starring in the middle of the Bears defense after Roquan Smith’s trade out of town was a breath of fresh air.

Unfortunately, Sanborn’s season is over. The Bears have put him on injured reserve:

Sanborn suffered an ankle injury during the Eagles game. And Head Coach Matt Eberflus said the decision to put him on IR was made because the injury was going to cause Sanborn to miss the next three games. Hence, Sanborn’s placement on IR — which comes with the opening of a roster spot. The Bears could do a number of things with that newfound roster spot. Hopefully, it is something wise with eyes for the future. But we don’t need to go down that rabbit hole just yet. Instead, let’s talk up Sanborn as someone who has been a pleasant surprise this season.

Sanborn started each of the last six games for the Bears, racking up 59 total tackles (48 solo) and stuffing the stat sheet on a weekly basis. Tackles-for-loss? Sanborn had five of them, essentially making it an expectation that he was going to bust into somebody’s backfield and take down a back. Sacks and quarterback hits? Sanborn had two sacks and three quarterback hits. Defensive Coordinator Alan Williams has been aggressive with Sanborn, who made the most of the opportunities. So while Sanborn’s year ends with an IR trip, at least the Wisconsin product from nearby Lake Zurich has made a strong case to return to the starting lineup next season.

Because I love small samples, how’s this for Sanborn’s per-17-game pace based on his production since entering the starting lineup:

  • 167 total tackles (136 solo)
  • 14 tackles-for-loss
  • 6 sacks
  • 8 quarterback hits

Yeah, I think that’ll will play. And so will this:

Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.