The Bears have rookie WR Anthony Miller "earmarked" to run from the slot this season, according to ESPN's Jeff Dickerson. That points to an immediate role for the 2nd-round rookie, but it also intimates WR Taylor Gabriel and WR Kevin White will compete for the starting outside spot opposite Allen Robinson. An intriguing Bears offense under new HC Matt Nagy and first-time OC Mark Helfrich makes all 3 wideouts worth considering near the end of best-ball drafts. We'll be watching to see how the fight for roles plays out.
The Bears selected Memphis WR Anthony Miller with the 51st overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft. Few WRs were more productive over the past 2 seasons. Miller racked up 95 catches for 1,434 yards and 14 TDs in 2016, finishing top 10 in the country in all 3 categories. Then he set new career highs across the board last year with 96 catches, 1,462 yards and a nation-high 18 TDs. And he was efficient, ranking 4th among all draft-eligible WRs in Pro Football Focus’ yards per route run. Miller wasn’t able to test at the Combine but earned an 87th percentile SPARQ score at his Pro Day. So you’re probably asking, “why wasn’t this dude a 1st-round pick?” Well, he’s smallish at 5’11 and 201 pounds. He’s already 23 years old. And he suffered a Jones fracture in his right foot in his final college game — an injury that has a tendency to cause long-term problems. That said, a healthy Miller looks capable of winning at all areas of the field and as an outside or slot receiver. He’s a long shot to assume #1 duties in Chicago with Allen Robinson in town. But Miller only needs to beat out Kevin White and Taylor Gabriel for the #2 role in an ascending offense. This is a nice landing spot.
The Bears grabbed Georgia LB Roquan Smith with the 8th overall pick in the NFL Draft. Smith should start right away inside the Bears' 3-4 defense and easily slide into a 3-down role. We'll see what that means for oft-injured LB Danny Trevathan. Smith should quickly become a big IDP factor with his blend of athleticism and play recognition.
New Bears HC Matt Nagy likes what he's seen from RB Tarik Cohen both on film and early in the offseason program. “He’s a run threat and then he can catch the ball in space in broken formations," Nagy said. “That’s an advantage for the play callers and the play designers to be able to do some different things. We can move him around and try to get an advantage. … He’s dynamic." Cohen is coming off a promising rookie season that saw him average 4.3 yards per carry on 87 attempts and tally 53 catches. Nagy said recently that Jordan Howard will remain the team's lead back, but there's certainly room for Cohen to tack on another 20 or 30 touches to last year's total. He's fairly valued at his current 7th-round ADP.
WR Taylor Gabriel announced Tuesday that he had agreed to terms with the Bears. Gabriel might have trouble finding targets if Chicago retains WR Cameron Meredith and finally gets something out of Kevin White -- on top of adding WR Allen Robinson. But we'll keep an eye on Gabriel's projected role as the roster and depth chart settle out and we get into summer.
The Bears are set to sign TE Trey Burton to a 4-year, $32 million deal, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. It's a significant investment in a guy who's flashed potential. Burton has just 63 career catches, but 60 of those have come over the past 2 seasons. He posted lines of 2-41-1 and 5-71-2 in 2 games TE Zach Ertz missed this past year. We'll see how Burton fits in alongside 2017 2nd-rounder Adam Shaheen. Chicago has now added Burton and WR Allen Robinson for 2nd-year QB Mitchell Trubisky.
WR Allen Robinson intends to sign with the Bears when free agency officially kicks off on Wednesday, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. Robinson is 1 of the top free-agent WRs and fills a massive void in Chicago, where Kendall Wright, Jeremy Bellamy and Dontrelle Inman led the WRs in targets last year. A-Rob is recovering from last September's torn ACL but should be ready well ahead of the 2018 opener. He exploded for an 80-1,400-14 line in his 2nd season in Jacksonville, becoming just the 4th player in NFL history to post 1,400+ yards at age-22 or younger (joining Randy Moss, Larry Fitzgerald and Josh Gordon). Robinson's numbers declined in 2016, but his 73 catches, 883 yards and 6 TDs all led a bad Jaguars passing game. We'll see what else Chicago adds this offseason, but Robinson should be a heavy favorite to lead the 2018 squad in targets. His arrival is a big boost to QB Mitchell Trubisky's fantasy outlook.
Update: Robinson's deal is for $42 million over 3 years, with about $25 million guaranteed -- a bit less than Sammy Watkins got from the Chiefs.
The Bears have named Mark Helfrich their new OC, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. Helfrich spent 4 seasons as Chip Kelly's OC at Oregon before serving as the Ducks' HC from 2013-2016. While HC Matt Nagy will call plays for the Bears, Helfrich should bring some tempo and creativity to the offense. We like the coaching staff Chicago is putting together for QB Mitchell Trubisky.
The Bears have named Matt Nagy their new HC. Nagy won't turn 40 until April 24, but he has spent the past 10 years coaching under Andy Reid, dating back to their time in Philadelphia. Nagy spent 4 years as the QBs coach in Kansas City before taking over as OC in 2017. After 4 straight years of finishing 20th or lower in yards, the Chiefs leaped to 5th in the league this season. They also matched their 6th-place scoring finish from 2013, the best mark since Reid arrived. Nagy inherits a young Bears offense with a QB drafted 3rd overall last April, a young pair of RBs and WRs Cameron Meredith and Kevin White coming off injuries. There's upside here for fantasy football drafters. We'll watch for Nagy to fill out his staff and offer any clues about his plans for the Chicago offense.
The Bears have fired HC John Fox. He went 14-34 in 3 seasons in Chicago, finishing last in the NFC North all 3 years. According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the Bears are looking for an offensive mind to replace Fox and work with QB Mitchell Trubisky.
Bears TE Adam Shaheen (chest) is inactive for today’s game against the Vikings. Dion Sims and Daniel Brown will continue to share TE duties. Neither is a fantasy option.
Bears TE Adam Shaheen (chest) is questionable for Sunday’s game against the Vikings after a limited week of practice. It’s the same boat he was in last week, when he ended up inactive. Fantasy owners shouldn’t be counting on Shaheen in Week 17 lineups.
Bears TE Adam Shaheen (chest) is inactive for today’s game against the Browns. Dion Sims and Daniel Brown will handle TE duties for Chicago. Neither is a reliable fantasy option, despite the plus matchup.
Today's Browns-Bears game will be played in snowy conditions. (Here's video from Soldier Field about 2 hours before kickoff.) Temperatures will be in the mid-20s with winds of 8-12 mph. This figured to be a run-heavy game plan from both teams anyway, and the weather will only push them further in that direction.
Bears TE Adam Shaheen (chest) is questionable for Sunday’s game against the Browns after a limited week of practice. We’ll find out his status by noon ET. Shaheen has a dream matchup vs. the league’s 31st-ranked TE defense, but the rookie is more of a DFS flier than a season-long option.
Bears S Adrian Amos is inactive for today's game against the Lions. It'll mark his 3rd straight game down because of a hamstring injury.
Bears TE Adam Shaheen (chest) is inactive for today's game against the Lions. He entered the day questionable.
Bears S Adrian Amos is questionable for Saturday's game against the Lions after missing the past 2 weeks with a hamstring injury. He managed limited practices Wednesday and Thursday. We'll keep an eye on further updates heading into the game. There would at least be some re-injury risk to Amos if active but also attractive tackle upside.
As expected, Bears S Adrian Amos (hamstring), DT Eddie Goldman (hip) and OLB Pernell McPhee (shoulder) are all inactive for today's game against the Bengals. All 3 entered the weekend doubtful. None of the 3 losses significantly alters the matchup for a mostly sluggish Cincinnati offense.
Bears S Adrian Amos (hamstring) and DT Eddie Goldman (hip) are doubtful for Sunday's game against the Bengals. Goldman isn't much of an IDP option even when healthy, but his absence can only help Cincinnati RB Giovani Bernard. Amos has been a top fantasy DB when healthy but is expected to miss his 2nd straight game. The D will also likely miss OLB Pernell McPhee, who is doubtful with a shoulder injury.
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