Matt Forte was popular and successful during his time with the Chicago Bears, but the do-it-all running back has some additional free time on his hands now that he has retired from the game.
Inspired by the Denver Broncos bringing back retired pass-rushing ace DeMarcus Ware back into the mix as a coach, Forte tossed up a Hail Mary of his own with an eye on getting into the coaching game:
Usually when you put “lol” at the end of something, everyone laughs, smiles, and takes it as a joke. But Forte wasn’t joking. Maybe.
I wasn’t joking https://t.co/byQ6aFTXBh
— Matt Forte (@MattForte22) June 20, 2018
LOL. But seriously, if Forte wants to lend a helping hand then he should come on down. Wouldn’t it be something if Jordan Howard transformed into a perennial Pro Bowl back after learning everything he needed to know about being a receiver out of the backfield from Forte? Every little bit helps. LBVS.
- In case you weren’t up to speed, the Bears hired Charles London to be the team’s running back coach this offseason. London comes to Chicago with a good track record and is already getting his hands on Howard in an attempt to improve his pass-catching prowess.
- Even though Howard has his short-comings as a receiver out of the backfield, let’s not lose sight of how good of a back he has been since bursting out on the scene in 2016. Back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons in an unimaginative offense behind an offensive line that has dealt with its share of injuries is nothing to sneeze at if you’re a Bears fan. You won’t catch former Pro Bowl back Maurice Jones-Drew underrating Howard. Nope. Sure won’t. Howard checks in at No. 7 on Jones-Drew’s list of the league’s best backs.
- How about some Howard highlights from the 2017 season for good measure?
- Remember how good the Bears’ running game was when it shouldered the load to single-handedly beat the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 3? You do? Good. Now imagine that kind of running potential going up against a defense that has to respect the threat of a coherent passing game. Yep, that is the stuff dreams are made of, my friends.
- Part of the potential in the Bears’ passing game lies in the upside of rookie receiver Anthony Miller. Over at Da Bears Blog, Johnathan Wood examines what some realistic expectations for the Memphis product could look like in 2018. One of the most difficult transitions from the college game to the pros is made by wide receivers. The game is faster, the players are bigger, and the assignments are more detailed at the next level. You don’t often see receivers step in and deliver with major breakout seasons right away. Generally, there is a learning curve and it’s something Miller (and all rookies) will have to conquer.
- Then again, I refuse to bet against someone who established himself as one of college football’s best receivers after starting his college career as a walk-on.
- Elsewhere in the world of Bears receivers:
Bennie Fowler, now a Chicago Bear, was apparently back in CO working with Ring of Famer Rod Smith yesterday … in the hail. Good times. pic.twitter.com/6GqYn91dyS
— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) June 20, 2018
- Bleacher Report’s Brad Gagnon names Bears receiver Kevin White as a player who is in danger of flaming out in 2018. There hasn’t been much to write about early in White’s career, as injuries have kept him on the sideline for more than 90 percent of the team’s offensive snaps since he was drafted in 2015. Chicago declined to pick up the fifth-year option on White’s rookie contract, but he reportedly has regained the speed that made him a lethal down-field threat and has been widely praised throughout the offseason training program. Perhaps Matt Nagy’s offense is the spark that will light the fire that will bring White back into the good graces of Bears fans.
- It would be quite the story if White is able to follow in the footsteps of Kyle Fuller, who put forth a career-best showing at cornerback after his fifth-year option wasn’t picked up. That deal cost the Bears a chunk of change and some negotiating leverage, but Fuller’s breakout season was embraced by Chicago’s coaches and he was rewarded handsomely with a new contract this offseason. Over at Bears Wire, Lorin Cox dives into some film that explains how Fuller improved in 2017.
- Earlier, we discussed Nick Kwiatkoski quietly (kwiatly?) playing at a high level last season. The Pro Football Focus post we cited in that piece also noted that Danny Trevathan checked in as a top-5 linebacker in one of the site’s signature statistics. Trevathan missed just four tackles in 2017 and posted PFF’s fourth-best combined tackle efficiency last season. Only Bobby Wagner (44.3), Paul Posluszny (28.0), and B.J. Goodson (26.) put up a better number among inside linebackers than Trevathan (25.3).
- No wonder Trevathan was miffed about his Madden overall grade:
@EAMaddenNFL y’all really on some trash with these overalls. It’s cool I’ll just edit myself on my own system!
— Danny Trevathan (@Grindin_59) June 19, 2018