Chicago Bears: Five keys to a playoff run in 2020

Chicago Bears (Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bears, David Montgomery
Chicago Bears (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Bears running game must find a way to improve

Last season the Chicago Bears struggled to generate a consistent running game. David Montgomery had a relatively quiet rookie season. He generated over 1,000 all-purpose yards, but only averaged 3.7 yards per carry.

A coaching shift took place this offseason and it was centered around the running game. Harry Heistand was somewhat of a scapegoat. Rumors are that Nagy and Heistand could not agree on the blocking scheme, and this is wy Juan Castillo looks to be bringing a shift back to more zone blocking. With how vastly different the offensive line looked from 2018 to 2019, the hope is that Castillo can help develop the inside presence of this line again.

The addition of Germain Ifedi could also prove to be useful. He struggled with penalties in Seattle while playing tackle, but he showed promise his rookie year as an offensive guard. He will be moving back inside for the Bears and hopefully, he can prove why he was a first-round pick in 2016.

Furthermore, we saw how the James Daniels and Cody Whitehair switch worked out. Although it seemed sensible and most supported the move, it is apparent Daniels is not capable of being an offensive center. He does not have the ability to pick up and call out blocking assignments correctly. Whitehair has that leadership mentality though and although he might not be the best snapper, he is who is best suited at the center position.

With these changes and Montgomery in his second season, the hope is that Nagy can trust his line and running back to gain the short yards rather than call a trick play. Moving Cordarrelle Patterson into a running back role could help and we have not even mentioned Tarik Cohen. The team has the talent to be better in the running game this season, but will they find a way to actually make it happen?