Chicago Bears running back Jordan Howard has done a stellar job of establishing his role as the team’s early-down back. Unfortunately, his lackluster hands have largely prevented him from stepping into a true workhorse role.

Howard has had some trouble in the receiving game in his career. According to Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune, he is adamant about improving his hands leading up to the 2018 NFL season:

“It started being a problem in high school, just not having my hands in the right position,” Howard said. “I didn’t work on it that much in college because we didn’t really throw to the backs that much. But I’m going to fix it.”

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It is troubling to see that this is something that Howard has long struggled with. His inability to consistently make catches out of the backfield has kept him from elevating his game. There is no question that he is their go-to player in the run game. However, he will need to become more versatile if he hopes to make it back to the Pro Bowl.

Howard has dropped 12 passes since coming into the league. Although it should be an easy mark to improve upon, he may not get the chance with running back Tarik Cohen now in the mix. While Howard got the lion’s share of touches, Cohen managed to flash some big-play potential out of the backfield. New head coach Matt Nagy has already expressed his excitement over utilizing the pint-sized playmaker in the offense. That said, Howard will need to make some serious strides if he is to prevent Cohen from dipping into his workload.