Chicago Bears: Kevin Jones Must Produce.
One of the issues that I haven't seen receive much attention,is the Chicago Bear's running game. Granted Matt Forte came in and really dropped some jaws last season, producing far beyond his expectations. He played so well, that Offensive Coordinator Ron Turner didn't want to take him out of the game. This will take a major toll on the length Forte's career if the Bears keep this up. Last season Forte had 316 rushing attempts for 1,238 yards and 8 touchdowns, averaging 3.9 yards per carry. In addition, he also lead the Bears in receptions with 63, resulting in 477 yards and 4 touchdowns. Collectively he had 1,715 yards, 12 touchdowns, and only one fumble (which was bogus). With numbers such as, I can understand the Bear's are reluctant to take him off the field. As I said earlier though, this is going to significantly shorten his career, so the Bears need another option.
The Bears have three additional Running Backs on their roster, Kevin Jones, Garrett Wolfe, and Adrian Peterson. Last season, Jones had 34 attempts for 109 yards,Wolfe had 15 for 69 yards, and Peterson had 20 carries for 100 yards. Of these players,Jones is the guy that needs to step up the most.Wolfe and Peterson are mainly Special Teams contributors, and are really only a last resort at the Half Back position. Especially Peterson, Wolfe has some upside. Jones spent his first four NFL seasons with the Detroit Lions, and was released prior to the 2008 season due to a torn ACL. Kevin played well for the Lions,when he played. It seems that he has struggled with injuries for awhile, and that is not encouraging. When healthy, Jones showed that he was both a valuable rushing and receiving threat. Hopefully,Jones can play a solid role in the Bears offense this year, and show that he still has the upside he once did. Personally, I think the Bears should have looked to sign one more veteran free agent.They may end up regretting not doing so.
Here is wishing to a healthy Forte!!
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