Although the starters actually hit the field (albeit briefly), the second preseason game was a bit of a letdown.
Maybe that’s the wrong word, but it looked more like a typical preseason game for a team with a lot of young players and an offense that is still learning its way.
The Bears still aren’t showing much scheme-wise, and key pieces such as Jordan Howard and Allen Robinson weren’t on the field, so overreacting is a little much at this point.
Elsewhere there were some bright spots and a few disappointments, all in all though the team seemed to come out of it unscathed and the coaches and players got more experience. Yesterday was exactly one month until the start of the season and with three more preseason games, there’s still plenty of time to work out the kinks.
And before I get accused of omitting James Daniel, Lester touched on his performance earlier today.
Ryan Nall, RB - With Howard out and Tarik Cohen getting limited reps (and no touches) Nall and Taquan Mizzell were the main running backs for Chicago. Nall was impressive, breaking off a 69-yard run and generally playing well. It’s hard for RBs to get into a groove in preseason games because offenses are reluctant to open their backs up to a ton of hits. Nall was solid after being an after thought last week.
DeAndre Houston-Carson, DB - Houston-Carson has had a nice little preseason. He’s been lost in the shuffle but he was around the ball a lot last night. The box score shows just one tackle and one pass deflection but I think he’s been able to shut down his man and has really shown up as a decent depth option.
Adam Shaheen, TE - The entire tight end position group could fill in right here but I wanted to highlight just one. Shaheen looked really good against the second string, as should be expected at this point in his career. If Shaheen is going to take the steps forward that the team and fans all hope in his second season, he should be able to torch back ups. He caught all three of his targets for 53 yards.
Anthony Miller, WR - Just because his stock is down this week doesn’t mean it’s down for good or that he won’t be a contributor this season. It merely shows how much further he has to go to begin transitioning his hyped camp and practices into on-field game production. The Memphis product had one catch for -1 yard on two targets and drew the ire of back up QB Chase Daniel on a broken down bubble screen play.
Miller’s knock has been his route running and need to learn to play inside the confines of a scheme after being able to freelance a lot in Memphis’s spread offense. He will likely get an earful in the film session but he’ll get a chance to rebound next week.
Marcus Cooper, CB - Prince Amukamara did not suit up this week and I for one, hope that the depth either steps up or Prince stays healthy because I think I’ve seen enough of Cooper. He was target right off the bat and got burned by A.J. Green (who is, admittedly very good) and John Ross.
Kylie Fitts, OLB - Kind of like Miller, I don’t think Fitts can be written off entirely based on a poor preseason game. Pro-Football Focus, love or hate them, said that Fitts had the most pass-rushing snaps on the Bears but recorded no pressures. After a nice debut, there’s still a learning curve going on. Keep that in mind moving forward.
Who else stood out to you?