Did Cole Kmet meet rookie expectations with Chicago Bears?

Chicago Bears - Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports
Chicago Bears - Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports /

When Cole Kmet was drafted the Chicago Bears had to know that they had the long term in mind much more than short term. Not only is he still just 22 years old now, he did not commit to football full time in college as he was a baseball player as well. Beyond that, all tight ends are set to struggle early in their careers.

Last year around this time we decided to look at some historical comparisons and try to set realistic expectations for Cole Kmet in his rookie year with the Chicago Bears. Overall, there were so many outcomes, but a typical season for a tight end to turn into an eventual success would look like

26-42 receptions and 269-484 yards

Anything below that would be a bit disappointing historically, but expecting anything beyond that was a bit too much. Knowing what we know, what did Kmet do as a rookie? 28 catches for 243 yards.

He is just over the expected number of catches, but on the lower end. Still, there is no linear progression where the players who skewed higher are more successful. They just all fit into this gap.

Kmet did have more catches, but fell 26 yards short of an average expectation. Still, on the low end Kmet was expected to get 26 catches for 269 yards, and he wound with 28 for 243. That is about as close as you get for a prediction.

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It may not have been the highest end outcome, but it showed enough in year one that an expectation for year two can be a step forward. For what it is worth, the article written last year mentioned Jimmy Graham, the duel at quarterback, the offensive line and other issues to set your expectations towards the lower end of this average. The article finished by saying that 20 catches for 200 yards is all that should be expected, and Kmet did get there last season.