How has the offseason affected Chicago Bears running back Tarik Cohen?
The offseason may not be quite over for Tarik Cohen. Cohen is going to enter the 2020 season as a potential unrestricted free agent. The Chicago Bears may be looking to extend him, and that would make him an easy winner of the offseason with his stock soaring up.
However, he is unsigned currently which does make his situation murky for the longterm. However, there is one thing that goes in his favor, and it is that he serves a role that is somewhat specific to just his skill set.
The Bears can add a quick scatback to replace Tarik Cohen and save money, but there are few running backs that have quite the same skill set as Cohen. Only Duke Johnson and Austin Ekeler have had similar starts to their career with the type of receiving and rushing success.
With that in mind, they do not necessarily have a backup for Cohen. Beyond that, running back is arguably the thinnest position on the depth chart. David Montgomery and Cohen have their roles, but those are different roles, and each complements each other.
You could argue that Cordarelle Patterson is a receiver/running back with return game value similarly to Tarik Cohen. If anyone on the roster were his backup, it would be Patterson.
Still, Patterson has his own role on the roster. He may be a depth running back, but there is no clear replacement or backup to Cohen on the roster.
Considering the Bears have not shown an urgency to replace him, and he is guaranteed to be a big part of the 2020 offense, Cohen has to be looked at as a winner during this portion of the offseason. Even if he does not sign an extension, he will get plenty of chances to prove his worth with a new offensive support system around him.