David Montgomery will enter training camp later this month poised to battle Mike Davis to get early-down reps out of the Chicago Bears backfield.
With Tarik Cohen not anticipating his function as mostly a pass-catching back to modify, Davis and Montgomery will take over the Jordan Howard gig, dividing the vast majority of first- and second-down carries. Chicago coaches have insisted Davis has been brought in to play a role, but it is Montgomery who has the greatest chance to win difference-making repetitions in 2019.
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The third-round rookie elicited resounding praise from coaches and beat writers throughout offseason workouts. Running backs coach Charles London glowed about Montgomery’s ability to break tackles, noting his”pretty infrequent contact equilibrium .”
“He certainly possesses that,” London recently told Adam Jahns of The Athletic. “It is important from the running back position since each play isn’t going to be clean and every hole is not likely to be clean. Sometimes you have to make that on your own. He did quite a bit of the. This has been something that we noticed. And that is something you can’t coach. You got it or you don’t and that he does. It’s something we quickly noticed about him.”
The comments on Montgomery’s ability to break tackles stand compared to the previous two coaching staffs’ belief that Howard’s biggest struggle came in creating yards after contact.
After generating praise during the shorts portion of offseason workouts, Montgomery’s largest test will appear when the pads are on during training camp and into the preseason. We’ve seen rookies crumble under the added pressure, and we have also seen young running backs — Phillip Lindsay at Denver is one recent example — glow in camps, flashing tackle-breaking ability.
If Montgomery lives up into the offseason hype that has been building, an already multi-faceted Bears offense will make life that much simpler on QB Mitchell Trubisky.