Written by John Dabe
With the departures of Adrian Amos, Bryce Callahan, and Jordan Howard, the Bears have some needs that they need to fill. First and foremost is running back. Jordan Howard had 250 rushing attempts for 935 yards and 9 touchdowns in 2018. He also caught 20 passes for 150 yards. All-in-all the Bears lost a guy who has 270 touches and 1,085 scrimmage yards. They recently signed Mike Davis, a solid back, but he’s nothing special and I don’t think he will be as productive and exceptional as Howard was this year. I have been watching film all day and checking out the top running backs of this draft and I stumbled upon a couple of sleepers.
The Bears have picks 87,127,163, 224, and 240 in this year’s NFL Draft. The clear favorite on film and amongst Bears writers and fans has been Miles Sanders going to the Bears at #87. The guy can do it all. He has great vision, he can make guys miss, he can catch the ball out of the backfield, and he can pass block. He would be the perfect fit for Matt Nagy’s offense. Unfortunately, I don’t believe that he will fall to 87. His draft stock is rising and I personally don’t see him making it to the third round.
The other options at running back are David Montgomery, Justice Hill, and Darrell Henderson. My favorite of the three is Montgomery from Iowa State. He does have some speed concerns as he ran a 4.63 at the Combine, but he fits the Bears system well. He’s a hard runner and isn’t afraid to take a hit, and excels at catching the ball out of the backfield. He knows how to get open and is tough to take down. He would also provide a perfect complement to the shifty Tarik Cohen.
On the other hand, Justice Hill is one quick dude. He ran a 4.4 at the Combine and is just flat out fast. He knows how to cut and make a move. His best traits are his speed and his cutting ability. He would fit well with the Bears and he would benefit from learning from Cohen. They are essentially the same player in more ways than one.
Finally, Darrell Henderson out of Memphis is simply a very solid running back. He was just 90 yards short of surpassing 2000 rushing yards this year, and he did it averaging 8.9 yards per carry (wild stat). He basically got a first down every time he touched the ball. He’s a bit undersized but I don’t think that’s going to matter. He ran a 4.49 at the combine and has the ability to catch balls out of the backfield.
Miles Sanders is ideal, but if he doesn’t fall to Chicago at #87 these three backs are the frontrunners to replace Jordan Howard in the Bears backfield.