If the Chicago Bears are looking for a running back with confidence, then Miles Sanders might be their guy:
While talking with the Good Morning Football crew on NFL Network, Sanders dropped some big-name comparisons as he sees himself as a dual-threat running back in the league.
“I can be that Alvin Kamara type or that Tarik Cohen type,” Sanders said, which surely should raise some eyebrows around Halas Hall and elsewhere.
The Bears drafted Tarik Cohen in the fourth round in the 2017 NFL Draft and he has turned out to be an absolute gem. Cohen is a game-changer whenever the ball is in his hands, and the Bears did everything int heir power to get him the ball as often as possible. Head Coach Matt Nagy and Offensive Coordinator Mark Helfrich used Cohen more often in their offense than their predecessors, though the increase in offensive snaps took away from his usage as a kickoff returner. But still … everyone can agree that more Cohen on offense is better than less Cohen.
Alvin Kamara was selected in the third round of the same draft class. And in an ironic twist, it was the Saints using a pick originally owned by the Bears to draft him. Before landing in the hands of the Saints’ front office, that selection belonged to the 49ers (as part of the Mitch Trubisky deal) before they shipped it to New Orleans. And for what it’s worth, the Bears scouted and met with Kamara a fair number of times during the pre-draft process. Had he dropped down the board some more, who knows what could have happened had he landed in Chicago. Instead, we know what *has* happened with Kamara, who has scored 32 touchdowns (22 rushing, 9 receiving, 1 return) in 31 games in the pros and has been an all-purpose threat since debuting in the league. Talk about a missed opportunity for the 49ers (and Bears, I guess).
Sanders racked up 1,274 rushing yards and nine touchdowns last season, but also tacked on 24 catches and 139 receiving yards to show off that versatility he boasts. He also has experience as a kick returner that dates back to his freshman year at Penn State. Sanders has the type of skill set that suggests he can be a three-down back with all-purpose upside and potential.
The idea of teaming Sanders and Cohen in the same backfield is mouth-watering. And while Sanders has been mocked to the Bears in a number of pre-draft mocks that have been shared this offseason, it’s possible that his stock could be rising to the point where he is gone by the time the Bears are scheduled to go on the clock. Chicago could trade up in order to ensure an opportunity to draft Sanders if they believe he is the perfect fit. And since GM Ryan Pace hasn’t been shy about mortgaging part of the future, I won’t put it past him. But because this draft is loaded with potential playmakers, trading up might not be the best use of the team’s assets. Then again, it might be worth it for a guy like Sanders.