Kahlil Bell @ Vikings
Heading into the Bears contest against the Broncos, Coach Lovie Smith paid third-year back Kahlil Bell a compliment when he pointed out that Bell's overall game was closer to that of Matt Forte rather than that of Marion Barber. While Barber was the feature runner in Denver, poor play at the end of the game and a penchant for injuries seemingly put him in the doghouse. Then the next week against the Seahawks, Bell surprisingly received the lion's share of the backfield duties. Bell responded with a solid performance as he scored the only offensive touchdown on the day and earned himself a starting role the following week.
As I watched Bell carry the football 23 times for 123 yards and add four receptions for 38 yards, I thought for sure it was Matt Forte on the field, and not Bell. Displaying vision, footwork, cutback ability and breaking tackles were commonplace for Bell on the night, and based on Coach Smith’s comments about him after the game, Bell has momentum to be Forte’s primary backup (assuming Forte comes back) next year.
In the Bears' season finale Bell will be the feature back, as the Bears face a Vikings defense that gave up 132 yards rushing on 19 carries to Evan Royster last week. Closing out the season, Bell is a must start RB-1 and will be a player to consider handcuffing with Forte at your draft next year.
LeSean McCoy Likely Out
Look to rookie Dion Lewis as the primary option to start if you’re in need of a replacement for LeSean McCoy as it appears the star running back will be sitting out the final game after an injury last week. Veteran Ronnie Brown will be in the mix, but Lewis has played well when given an opportunity and now that the Eagles have been kicked out of the playoff chase, it’s likely Coach Andy Reid will want his young playmaker on the field, to evaluate him for next year.
Please Note—** means player could receive early rest on final week.
|2||Ray Rice||@ Bengals|
|3||Rashard Mendenhall||@ Browns|
|4||Marshawn Lynch||@ Cardinals|
|5||Reggie Bush (I)||Jets|
|6||C.J. Spiller||@ Patriots|
|7||Kahlil Bell||@ Vikings|
|8||Felix Jones (I)||@ Giants|
|9||Ryan Mathews||@ Raiders|
|13||Evan Royster||@ Eagles|
|16||Frank Gore**||@ Rams|
|17||Shonn Greene||@ Dolphins|
|18||DeAngelo Williams||@ Saints|
|19||Willis McGahee (I)||Chiefs|
|21||Chris Johnson (I)||@ Texans|
|28||Kevin Smith**||@ Packers|
|29||Donald Brown||@ Jaguars|
|32||Jackie Battle||@ Broncos|
|33||Roy Helu (I)||@ Eagles|
|34||Jonathan Stewart||@ Saints|
|36||LeGarrette Blount||@ Falcons|
|38||Mike Tolbert||@ Raiders|