Bears RB coach Charles London noted that while he had his struggles during his rookie season, RB David Montgomery shined in pass protection.
“Really for a rookie to come in and play, this is tough, but he played a lot for us in third down and pass protection roles,” London said, via Kevin Fishbain of The Athletic. “I think he really excelled there. I think that gets lost in the shuffle sometimes. Everybody focuses on how many rushes he had, how many receiving yards or receptions he had, but he was one of the top backs in the league as far as pass protection goes on third downs.
With RB Tarik Cohen entering a contract year, Montgomery is still set to be the featured running back in the Bears scheme under HC Matt Nagy. Nagy spoke at the combine saying that new coaches and adjustments should help Montgomery.
“He’s a very talented kid,” Nagy said in February. “I love his hunger. We talked last year about how much he learned each week in practice about what this long season was about. He can do a lot of different things. We know what his strengths are and what his weaknesses are. Could we have helped him last year by getting him the ball more? Yes, absolutely. It’s a part of the identity. What we are going to do is focus on schematically, how can we get better? And if we start with that, then we can worry about the players. I know right now I feel very good with the players we have and we all need to, everybody starting with me needs to be a lot better.”
Montgomery himself is convinced that he will make a much larger impact for the Bears this season, as he enters his second season with more experience.
“A year, an entire year of me being in an offense, me not being solely a complete rookie and me going in with the unknown that I don’t know any of the offense or me going in with the unknown that I don’t know if I’ll play or not, me going with the unknown of not knowing if I will get carries or not, or worrying about all the small stuff that doesn’t even matter anymore,” Montgomery said. “Now I can really get to playing football now because I’m a year in and I’m a lot more confident. I’m ready to go have fun now.”
Packers C Corey Linsley, who is entering the final year of his contract, said he has “no idea” what will happen with his situation.
“I have no idea what’s going to happen. I can only control what I can control,” said Linsley, via Ryan Wood.
As he enters the twilight of his NFL career, RB Adrian Peterson is still in search of his first Super Bowl championship. He has also said he’d like to catch RB Emmitt Smith, the NFL’s all-time rushing leader, despite still needing 4,140 more yards to pass Smith’s record.
“Winning a championship is the one I want most,” Peterson said on NFL Network, via Pro Football Talk. “That’s one of the goals I set to myself when I entered the NFL was to pass the GOAT,” Peterson said. “I look forward to playing a couple more years, 3-4 more years, who knows, depending on how my body is feeling.”