Bears rookie Kyler Gordon and Jaquan Brisker show off ball-peddling skills in training camp

Since joining the Bears, both rookies have shown some of the same skills they showed in college. On a play during off-season practice, Gordon covered a receiver, stopped on a dime, turned around and jumped high to intercept a pass. Another day, Brisker hit a receiver’s fly ball twice on the same play (the receiver recovered the first fumble).

“Ball hawks, that’s what they are, that’s why we brought them here,” coach Matt Eberflus said. “A person doesn’t change from college. If they have ball skills in college, they still have it. We improve them by being fanatical and practicing the way we practice and the drills we do that we’ve done forever and the new ones that we’re incorporating now. We’ll improve that skill. But it has to be a desire.”

With the Colts from 2018-21, Eberflus coordinated a defense that ranked in the NFL’s top 10 in takeouts in his four seasons. Last year, Indianapolis finished second with 33 takeouts. The Bears, meanwhile, are tied for 26th with 16 takeouts.

Eberflus wants the Bears to focus on creating turnovers like former cornerback Charles Tillman has done throughout his career. Using a technique dubbed the “Peanut Punch,” Tillman forced 42 fumbles during 12 seasons with the Bears from 2003 to 2014.

Eberflus hosted Tillman at Halas Hall to speak to the team’s rookies during rookie minicamp in May.

“It must be like Peanut, when he was here he was talking to these guys about how to hit him and the details of that, and to me that’s exactly what they’re doing,” Eberflus said. “They take it to the next level. You play like you train, so keep training that way, keep doing it, we’ll do it in a game.”