Chicago Bears: Could Eric Kush push James Daniels?
Most Chicago Bears fans are putting James Daniels immediately into the starting lineup. However, Eric Kush may be pushing the 2nd round rookie
The James Daniels selection in round 2 of the NFL draft was universally praised as a strong selection. The Chicago Bears had a need on the interior, they added the best available player at that spot. Boom, we have a starter.
However, James Daniels is just 20 years old. His athleticism and raw talent present an enormous upside. Still, he played center each of the past two seasons. He is transitioning to a new position, his body is still developing and he did fall out of round one for a reason. The fact of the matter is that Daniels still has a lot to prove.
In a recent column, Brad Biggs of the Chicago-Tribune reassured that sentiment and mentioned a potential name to watch for when it comes to starting at guard. Biggs wrote.
"He’s (Daniels) got to earn a spot with the starting unit and the Bears like veteran Eric Kush, who was with the Chiefs previously when Matt Nagy was there"
The Chicago Bears have historically been high on Eric Kush. In 2016, when the line fell apart completely, Kush was there as the only lineman who held his composure down the stretch run. He showed starter upside with swing guard ability.
Unfortunately, his 2017 ended before it ever started when he tore his hamstring. The Bears knew that they needed to address the guard position early in the 2018 NFL draft. However, Ryan Pace cited Kush as a reason for letting go of Josh Sitton without any assurances of adding a guard high in the draft.
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What is interesting to see is that Nagy has prior experience with him as well. When Pace and Nagy both like you and both have fond memories of you, you have something.
The upside in James Daniels is immense when compared to Kush. However, the team does not have to force Daniels into playing time at a position he may not be ready to take on yet.
Eric Kush provides this team with a great luxury heading into camp. He can push Daniels, help Daniels and potentially fill in for Daniels if need be. The Bears confidence in his speaks volumes and it shows that this team not only is adding higher profile talent but has also filled in the back end of this roster adequately.