Post by Bornthrilla on Jun 16, 2020 7:32:45 GMT -5
Tarik Cohen “really slacked” on physical fitness last year Posted by Josh Alper on June 16, 2020, 6:44 AM EDT
While discussing the downturn of the Bears Offense in 2020, running back Tarik Cohen said last week that the unit was too predictable and made things hard on themselves as a result.
That would address the shortcomings of the offense as a whole, but it may not tell the entire story of Cohen’s own slide from the heights of 2018. Cohen was less productive as a runner and a receiver, which might have been at least partly due to his self-admitted lack of attention to his own physical fitness.
“I’ve been doing yoga now, stretching more often and just like the small training room — in-house things you do to keep your body durable,” Cohen said, via NBCSportsChicago.com. “And to keep the wear-and-tear of the season off of you longer. I really slacked on that. I always had older guys that would keep me on that, keep me in line.”
It’s a big year for several Bears players as they try to bounce back from a down year. With free agency looming in 2021, Cohen’s at the top of that list.
Not something I would've said out loud. Notice how it made it to the headline of the article...
He needs a skilled communication adviser. One that will give him quality advice on what to say and not say. That comment will follow him, especially if he has some unproductive games. He's no longer the small cute rookie. Expectations have risen.
I just get the feeling they're looking for a reason not to resign him for whatever reason. It makes no sense to me because he's been a good player when given the opportunity and he's been an ambassador for the team. But who knows what evil goes on behind the scenes with these folk.
Bears RB Tarik Cohen's NFL future hinges on 2020 contract year
By JJ Stankevitz June 19, 2020 2:16 PM
It’s a weird time to be in a contract year.
If the NFL’s 2020 season is played in front of empty stadiums, the league’s salary cap very well may decrease in 2021. And that feels like the best-case scenario; the alternative is a shortened season or no season at all amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Money-wise, these are short-term concerns for the league. New TV contracts are expected to generate a windfall of cash for the league in 2022. But immediate financial uncertainty might be why Allen Robinson’s widely-expected contract extension hasn’t happened yet, as colleague Adam Hoge wrote earlier this month.
This all puts Tarik Cohen in a tough spot as he enters the final year of his rookie contract. Being a running back — even one who does so much more — doesn’t help either.
Nor does the fact Cohen is coming off his worst season as a pro.
“It’s definitely a motivating factor being that this is the year,” Cohen said of his upcoming contract year. “I feel like I can’t put any pressure on nobody else. It’s all on me. That’s how I like to go about it.
“I just take it upon myself, anything else like, I want to win as a team. I feel like if we win as a team that is good for everybody’s individual success.”
It’s a good answer. But money for running backs is hard to come by, and might be even harder to come by for Cohen if he can’t prove 2019 was a blip, and not the start of a trend. That's independent of what kind of offense the Bears have.
Cohen averaged 4.7 yards per touch last year — 3.3 yards per rushing attempt and 5.8 yards per reception — down over two yards from his 2018 average. Cohen actually had eight more receptions in 2019 than he had in 2018, yet he had 269 fewer receiving yards.
Cohen admitted he wore down more in 2019, especially toward the end of the season, than he had in years past. He recognizes he needs to better take care of his body — especially without a veteran like Benny Cunningham around to push him.
Also: Cohen had six drops last year, per Pro Football Focus, after having just four total in his first two seasons as a pro.
But not all of Cohen’s 2019 downturn was on him. Matt Nagy struggled to scheme him into favorable matchups — Cohen said he felt like when he was in the slot, he was across from a defensive back; when he stayed in the backfield, “it was pretty much linebackers.”
And when Cohen did get the ball, he didn’t always have an opportunity to run after the catch — although he perhaps could’ve turned upfield more instead of bolting toward the sidelines on some plays.
Either way, Cohen needs to help himself out, but he also needs his coaches and quarterback(s) to help him, too.
MORE: Why the Bears have been blown away by Khalil Mack's offseason
Right now, Cohen is saying all the right things. But contract years can become volatile. If Cohen doesn’t feel like he’s getting the help he needs around him, he could become frustrated — and would have every right to feel that way.
“We’re putting last year behind us and we’re just going to move forward,” running backs coach Charles London said. “He knows that I’ve got his back and we’re going to do whatever we think’s best for Tarik as far as in the offense and whatever that may entail. I don’t think that’s going to be an issue with him at all. He’s also very motivated to get out there and return to his 2018 form.”
That’s the goal, to get Cohen back to who he was in 2018. That version of Cohen should have no problem landing a multi-year, eight-figure contract — even in the midst of a pandemic.
That’s also the version of Cohen the Bears need to revive their offense.
“I feel like we’ll probably go back to the things we were doing in 2018,” Cohen said. “I feel like we’re just going to simplify things. I feel like at times we just made things too hard on ourselves and we didn’t have people guessing. I feel like we were kinda just showing our cards a little bit.
“I feel like this year, with a new OC, coach (Bill) Lazor — (I’m) already seeing the things he has planned for us. It’s going to be hard to tell who’s getting the ball and when or how they’re getting the ball, too.
she's the "symbol" of lady aggie basketball excellence. its amber calvin's "show time" in aggieland!! the queen of "no look" passes...
this is a "must perform" year for cohen. hard to get opportunities as a "small back/receiver" in the league. so he's gotta come thru this year...
It is hard to " come thru " without touches. As I said before " The Chicago Bears do not have a history of utilizing small backs or receivers " last season was not all The Kids fault instead using his momentum that he ended with from the previous season . They basically excluded him from their offensive scheme . As Randy Moss stated " Chicage needs to give Cohen 15 to 20 touches each game in some way running or receiving.