We have speculated that Cordarelle Patterson will be a running back for the Chicago Bears in 2020. It sounds like it is coming to fruition.
When you look at the number of running backs on the Chicago Bears roster, and the number of wide receivers on the Chicago Bears roster, it was easy to come to a conclusion that Cordarrelle Patterson may be making a move to the running back room.
However, without any offseason activity, it was hard to confirm those prior beliefs. The Chicago Bears did not change Pattersons‘ number, and will not change his position designation. However, all signs out of training camp are that Patterson is working in the running back room.
After practice, Nagy was asked about where Patterson was working, and he noted that he was with Charles London, the running backs coach for most of the day.
“For him to be able to go back there and take some snaps, get used to it, it is different, just because there are different techniques that he’s going to learn,” Nagy said. “I think between Charles London and Dave Ragone and the running backs in that room, it’s been a good room for him so far.”
Nagy is optimistic about the change to running back and while the buzz is that he is also working with Dave Ragone, the passing game coordinator, Nagy is not shy about admitting that he has spent most of his time in the running back room.
Cordarelle Patterson admitted the same. According to the Chicago Tribune, Patterson is working on more than catching passes. Pass protection is key for him now.
“It’s not just how to run the ball,” he said. “It’s how to pass protect and pick up blocks and just doing everything.”
Patterson took some snaps at tight end last year and dipped his toes into blocking. He was raw but ambitious.
His ambitious ability has turned him into a special teams star, and it could turn Patterson into a weapon. Last season Patterson was much more of a gadget player than a running back. When he was on the field, it was a tell to what was going on.
However, if teams can respect him to stay in and pass protect, like a third-down back, it opens up the playbook for what he can do. As noted, now he is a player who can not only motion out wide but also to a flex tight end spot.
Of course, he can also catch passes out of the backfield. Still, committing him to the running backs room also opens up more running plays that he can run.
When Patterson was in the game, he was going to get a jet sweep, or he was going to cut outside. Now, he can learn to read blocks and see the timing and patience of a back like David Montgomery.
Again, it does not mean Patterson will be a stud all-around back, but having him be a running back who can do a little bit of everything forces teams to respect him much more than a gadget player who almost certainly will get the ball and will run to the edge with it. Overall, this is a smart move for the Chicago Bears.