Bears Sign AFL Rookie of the Year (and Top Receiver) Malachi Jones; Waive Matt Fleming

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Bears Sign AFL Rookie of the Year (and Top Receiver) Malachi Jones; Waive Matt Fleming

Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears’ collection of wide receivers just got that much deeper:

A Thursday afternoon roster update revealed a shuffle at receiver with the addition of Malachi Jones and the departure of Matt Fleming. The Bears signed Fleming back in March after the team’s three-day rookie minicamp. Fleming played college football at Division III Benedictine University, but his calling card  was high-end speed he showed off at an All-American level as a track-and-field athlete.

As for Jones, he tore up the Arena Football League last season and that’s probably one reason he’s getting a shot with the Bears right now. Jones won the league’s Rookie of the Year and Receiver of the Year awards. Not bad for a first professional season. Jones led the league in receiving yards (1,156), yards per game (96.3), and yards per catch (15.0) as he showed off an ability to make big chunk plays. He also finished second in touchdown receptions (29) and all-purpose yards (1,196). I must say that putting up big numbers as a rookie on an expansion team leaves me more impressed than I expected to be.

This isn’t Jones’ first spin in the NFL, having spent some time in the Atlanta Falcons’ camp during spring 2017. Jones played his college ball at Appalachian State, where he was part of the school’s first ever bowl win. Checking in at 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds (at least according to his old team’s profile), Jones enters the fray of 12 wideouts in Bears camp looking to earn a roster spot this summer.



Author: Luis Medina

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