Chicago Bears: 5 players with the most to prove in 2021 season

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Chicago Bears (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bears, Eddie Goldman
Chicago Bears (Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports) /

Chicago Bears with the most to prove in 2021: Eddie Goldman

Over the course of the 2020 season, the Bears defense gave up 11 more rushing yards per game and roughly 5.0 points more per game than they did in the 2019 season. Now, a lot of factors go into stats like that. However, one common denominator that’s easy to pick out? Eddie Goldman wasn’t on the field for the entirety of the 2020 season.

Now returning after sitting out last year, Goldman fills a huge gap at nose tackle that the Bears couldn’t quite fill last season. The 27-year-old is a gigantic part of this Bears defense — literally. As one of the best run-stuffing defensive linemen in the game, Goldman comes back to prove that he’s still in top-tier shape and can make a difference on this line.

The one interesting wrinkle to Goldman is the fact that the Bears could potentially cut him next year and save almost $7 million. Now, that would be quite the bold decision on Pace’s part. But, the Bears will need some cap space next year and tough decisions will have to be made.

The fact of the matter is, taking a year off may not bode well for anybody, let alone a 320-pound lineman. He has to prove he’s not only in football shape, but he’s still as good as he was before taking a season off.