Tarik Cohen was a game breaker in Week Four against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Was it just the Bucs defense, or is Tarik Cohen becoming a key to the offense?
While the big name added to the Chicago Bears offense this summer was Allen Robinson, there was a lot of buzz surrounding the usage and impact of Tarik Cohen and Trey Burton. Burton and Cohen are mismatch weapons who can be used in motion to support the run and the passing game.
However, through four weeks, it could be argued that both Burton and Cohen were as big of disappointments as Trubisky. Then Week Four happened.
It started early with Burton opening up the passing game on a 39-yard touchdown. However, from there, it became a Tarik Cohen game. Cohen caught seven passes for 121 yards and a touchdown. He also added 13 carries for 53 yards.
Combining for 20 touches to put up 174 yards and a touchdown is elite. While Cohen may not continue that every game, the question is, will he be this big of a part of the offense?
Cohen had 15 rushes, and 7 carries to total 22 touches in three weeks to start his season. Now, 13, 7, and 20 in one game.
What is even more interesting to note is that Cohen had two more carries than Jordan Howard in this game. Considering the way the first half went, you would assume half number two would be a Howard half. However, they continued to use Cohen in the running game to salt away the lead.
His passing game usage is worth noting as well. Look at his route chart below. He ran four right to the right, four routes from the left. He lined up on the right once and flared out to the left.
His other three routes to the left feature a deep pass, a quick pass that he turned upfield after the catch, and a pass that he broke a route off over the middle. On the right side, he got a target from the slot, and also created after the catch, over the middle, and deep down the field.
Tarik Cohen is a versatile weapon and was being deployed in a variety of ways. The Chicago Bears need to continue to develop him in their offense. While he may not turn it in 121 yards, seven targets in this variety of ways should be a staple of this offense.
The versatility and fear to defend deep, short, the slot and over the middle because of one player is worth keeping on the field. Expect Matt Nagy to spend the bye week looking to keep Cohen involved in the offense, so that he is not the here and there spark that he was last season.