The Chicago Bears were expected by many to contend for a Super Bowl this season. Instead, they went 8-8 and missed the playoffs thanks to a dreadful offense and a regressed defense.
Now, the Bears must go back to the drawing board, one year after an impressive 12-win campaign in 2018 in which it appeared that Chicago had broken out.
Here are three major needs for Chicago:
3. Tight End
When the Bears signed Trey Burton to a multi-year deal in March 2018, they were thinking they were getting a solid young tight end who could hold down the fort for years.
And you know what? Early on, that looked to be the case, as Burton played in all 16 games and caught 54 passes for 569 yards and six touchdowns during his debut season in the Windy City.
However, it was a short honeymoon for Burton, as injuries plagued him throughout the offseason and limited him to just eight contests this year, as he went on to log a meager 14 catches for 84 yards.
Not a single Chicago tight end even tallied 100 yards receiving over the entire 2019 campaign, and for an offense that lacks elite talent as it is, that is a problem.
Whether it’s through the draft or free agency, the Bears desperately need to address this issue.
2. Offensive Line Help
The Bears’ offensive line was bad in 2019, to say the least.
Kyle Long got hurt again, Chicago allowed 45 sacks on the year overall and Pro Football Focus ranked the Bears’ offensive line 25th in the NFL at the conclusion of the season.
Offensive lines are never an easy thing to mend, as it takes more than just talent to fix them. Cohesiveness is also a big thing, so even if you add pieces, it takes some time for them to gel.
Regardless, Chicago absolutely needs to make some changes up front to provide Mitchell Trubisky with more protection and to open up some more holes for what was a very stagnant running game in 2019.
1. Another Running Back
The Bears tried to put together a three-pronged rushing attack that included Mike Davis, David Montgomery and Tarik Cohen heading into 2019.
Needless to say, it didn’t succeed.
Davis carried the ball just 11 times before being cut midway through the year, Montgomery had a so-so rookie campaign and Cohen was a virtual non-factor in the running game.
Chicago still has hope that Montgomery can develop into something nice in the backfield, but in a league where teams regularly employ multiple running backs, the Bears need more depth at the position.
Perhaps Cohen will have a bounceback year in 2020, but he is more of a Swiss army knife type of player in the mold of James White rather than a consistent rusher, and Montgomery is very unproven.
The Bears actually have some decent receivers in Allen Robinson and Anthony Miller, so adding another talented running back (maybe Melvin Gordon?) would go a long way to helping Trubisky and the offense.