The Bears found a lot of ways to use running back Tarik Cohen last season and that creativity paid off with 1,169 yards from scrimmage, an average of 12.5 yards per punt return and eight touchdowns.
Chicago’s offseason saw Jordan Howard get traded to the Eagles while Mike Davis and David Montgomery arrived to flesh out the backfield. Cohen said in June that he doesn’t expect those changes to impact the way the team uses him in 2019, but comments from head coach Matt Nagy on Tuesday suggest things could look somewhat different.
“We moved [Cohen] around a lot last year, and I do feel like there was a time — probably later in the season — where we probably gave him a little bit too much,” Nagy said, via the Chicago Sun-Times. “And when you mentally drain them, it pulls them back physically.”
Cohen only had four touches in the team’s playoff loss to the Eagles and Nagy said that was “not enough,” so there’s a balancing act to do with making sure the team is getting the most out of Cohen without overtaxing him. Given Nagy’s aversion to playing first-stringers in the preseason, September 5 will likely be the first chance to see how that balance is working out in Chicago.