The Chicago Bears need to bench Kellen Davis now


I find it hard to believe that the Chicago Bears coaching staff still believes that their best option at tight end is Kellen Davis. What ever pluses he may hold over his backups are no where near able to make up for his minuses. Kellen Davis has been comically bad in 2012, and the punch line could be, 'Chicago Bears miss the playoffs'.

Yes, I am the same guy who wrote last month that, unfortunately Kellen Davis isn't going anywhere. But enough is enough. The Chicago Bears simply can not keep putting him on the field. They are getting practically nothing out of the tight end position, and teams aren't even having to game plan against him and his frequent drops. If I were coaching against the Bears, I'd instruct my defense to ignore Kellen Davis, because an open Davis, at 6'7", is just too enticing a target for any QB.

You can't blame Jay Cutler for continuing to throw to him, he's open, he's on the field, and the tight end position has to be a viable outlet to keep a defense honest. Imagine how much better the Brandon Marshall effect would be if the Bears had a guy in that spot catching the ball. The Chicago coaches keep putting Kellen Davis on the field, and Cutler is just doing his job.

Kellen Davis should should probably take the Dropopotamus nick name from Rashied Davis, but he'd most likely drop it!

With one more drop against the Vikings, he's up to eight on the year, which you could live with if he were catching a lot of balls, but he's not. According to Pro Football Focus, Davis has been targeted 41 times, which is 31st among TEs that have seen at least 25% of their teams snaps. His 17 receptions rank him 41st, and his catch percentage (41.5%) ranks him 57th. Bad, bad, bad...

Matt Spaeth had a good catch a few weeks ago, but don't assume he has great hands. He's made his money in the NFL as a blocker, but I think if given the chance he would catch better than Davis has this season. The thing with Spaeth is he's not much of a yards after the catch threat, and he's not gonna win a foot race. Using him to to run down the seam and occupy a safety probably isn't going to happen. PFF does have him as the Bears best blocking TE by a wide margin. His overall blocking grade is a +10.6.

I think I'd leave Spaeth in his current role, and I'd give Kyle Adams the start. Both Adams and Spaeth ran comparable 40 yard dashes, in the 4.8 range, but Adams seems more fluid on the field. In the little bit we've seen of Adams (8 preseason catches and 4 regular season catches) he appears to be a better athlete that Spaeth. He isn't the blocker that Spaeth is, but at this point as long as he can get himself in position and seal off a defender I'd take it. PFF does have Adams with a neutral .0 grade in the blocking department, but that's most likely a small sample size.

The Bears could also flex him out and give a 3 wide look. That will force the defense to adjust either by bringing a safety up or by moving a linebacker out. It'll be up to Mike Tice to figure out how to best use Adams.

I think the Bears have been more than patient with Kellen Davis and it's time for him to be held accountable. Bench him, increase the playing time of Kyle Adams, utilize some more spread looks, and maybe even get fullback Evan Rodriguez involved some more. With three games remaining in the season what do the Bears have to lose.

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