Chicago Bears General Manager Ryan Pace went all-in on overhauling the team’s group of wide receivers.
There 12 receivers on the Bears’ current roster. Eight of them were acquired this offseason via free agency or the draft. So if you were looking for someone to stand out from that group and catch someone’s eye during the offseason training program, that position group figured to be a safe bet.
But I don’t figure you would expect for ESPN Chicago’s Jeff Dickerson to list Kevin White as the offseason camp standout, would you? Well, that’s exactly what happened. Seriously.
Dickerson notes that White has “looked better than expected” as a route-runner in Matt Nagy’s offense. So perhaps there is something to the recent report of White catching the eyes of reporters when he showed off the blazing speed he was known for at West Virginia while running deep patterns in camp. If White is turning heads for all the right reasons, then sign me up for whatever is to come this season.
Additionally, White has been healthy throughout the offseason workout program. That is a significant accomplishment in its own right if you consider his decorated injury history. In the NFL, sometimes the best ability is availability and White hasn’t had that since being plucked with the seventh pick in the 2015 NFL Draft. But if he has it in 2018, then watch out!
With that in mind, we shouldn’t overlook the constant positive reinforcement White has received from Nagy, Mitch Trubisky, and others throughout the offseason. I won’t go as far to say that is a driving force in White’s re-emergence, but it could have helped lift the spirits of a receiver who would understandably be down on his luck after three injury ravaged years as a pro. We should always try to keep the human element in mind, especially in situations like this one.
Despite White’s injury concerns, the Bears are giving him every opportunity to make the team in the final year of his rookie deal. And to this point, it looks like White is making the most of it – much like cornerback Kyle Fuller did last summer. This is exactly what you want to see from a player with White’s prospect pedigree. Now, it’s up to White to keep the positive momentum he has built in the offseason going through training camp, the preseason, and ultimately, the all-important regular season.