Chicago Bears Players to Watch When Betting on Productivity for the 2020 NFL Season

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The Chicago Bears were an offensive wasteland in 2019 but hidden talent lurks here in the Windy City. It’s all about knowing where to look.

Despite the team scoring an average of only 17.5 points per game, players like Allen Robinson and Tarik Cohen put up some gaudy numbers.

Especially Robinson, who logged 98 receptions amid mediocre quarterback play.

David Montgomery put up respectable numbers during his rookie season and figures to build upon his production as the featured back while Cohen is more of an all-purpose player.

There may be a quarterback controversy brewing in Chicago, so a competition between incumbent Mitchell Trubisky and the incoming Nick Foles is worth watching.

1 – Stud: Allen Robinson, WR

2019 statistics:

  • 98 receptions
  • 1,147 yards
  • 11.7 yard per reception
  • 7 touchdowns

Robinson had an epic comeback season, posting a career-high in receptions with 98 and gaining 4-figures in reception yardage for the first time since 2015. Despite his production, he was a Pro Bowl snub, given the lackluster talent around him.

Still, it shows Robinson is the heart and soul of the offense and he’ll only be 27 by the time the season kicks off, although he’s entering his 7th year as a professional.

While it’s unlikely Robinson posts numbers like he did during his 2019 campaign given the instability at quarterback for the Bears, he can easily lead the team in receiving once more and beat his projected numbers.

Allen Robinson WR Bears

That said, he’s probably the only Chicago Bear worth drafting in the early rounds in fantasy football and he’s also a safe pick to bet the over at online sportsbooks in many productivity categories.

The obvious downside to Robinson is his durability, having played in fewer than 50 percent of his games between 2017 and 2018, playing in just 14 of a possible 32.

Robinson may likely play out the season with 2 quarterbacks as Nick Foles enters a quarterback competition with incumbent starter Mitchell Trubisky. However, Foles has historically played well when he’s had to fight for the starting job at quarterback.

He won Super Bowl LII in 2017 in relief of the injured Carson Wentz and he played well in relief of Wentz in 2018 as well before landing the starting gig in Jacksonville. Foles also had a legendary season in 2013 when he started 10 games in relief of then-incumbent Michael Vick.

However, he flamed out fast after average to below-average play when he was handed the starting job in Philadelphia (2014), St. Louis (2015), and Jacksonville (2019).

It remains to be seen who starts at quarterback in 2020, but regardless, look for Allen Robinson to continue to excel whether Foles or Trubisky lines up under center.

Here are Robinson’s projected 2020 statistics, per ESPN.com:

  • 85 receptions
  • 1,039 yards
  • 12.2 yards per reception
  • 7 touchdowns

2 – Sleeper: Tarik Cohen, RB

2019 statistics:

  • 64 carries
  • 213 yards
  • 3.3 yards per carry
  • 0 touchdowns
  • 79 receptions
  • 456 yards
  • 3 touchdowns

Remember Darren Sproles? Cohen is a carbon copy of him. At 5’6, 181lb, Cohen is one of the smallest players in the league, but he’s also one of the most versatile.

He’s listed as a running back, but he’s more of an offensive weapon than anything else.

In 3 seasons, he has 203 career receptions so if you play points per reception (PPR) fantasy football, Cohen should be an early-round pick as he snags a lot of catches year after year. But, he’s also safe to bet the over in many statistical locations.

For one, oddsmakers always predict players like Cohen to see limited snaps and production, but players of his style are always a threat to produce and can put up outstanding numbers either as a running back or as a receiver.

Tarik Cohen Bears RB

These all-purpose players can light up the stat sheet. Further, Cohen links well with 2nd year running back David Montgomery. While Montgomery is a 222-lb power back who runs a 4.63 dash in the 40, Cohen is the exact opposite.

This means he’s also likely to see more touches with the only other viable running back on the Bears’ roster being Ryan Nall, who ran the ball twice in 2019.

Look for Cohen to remain the 2nd receiver and 2nd running back on the Bears. He’s one of those high-purpose role players who just produces and this season is no exception. For fantasy leagues, he’s the ultimate sleeper pick and if you bet on productivity at NFL sportsbooks, he’s safe to bet the over on.

Now, little guys like Cohen can get nicked up often, especially since they’re often facing players between 60 and 90lb heavier than they are, but agile scat backs can and will produce at a top-level.

He’s a mid-round pick in fantasy.

Here are Cohen’s projected statistics:

  • 68 carries
  • 289 yards
  • 4.2 yards per carry
  • 1 touchdown
  • 72 receptions
  • 510 yards
  • 2 touchdowns

3 – Stumbler: Mitchell Trubisky, QB

2019 statistics:

  • 326 completions
  • 516 attempts
  • 3,138 yards
  • 17 touchdowns
  • 10 interceptions
  • 48 carries
  • 193 yards
  • 2 touchdowns

Trubisky is running out of chances and it’s evidenced by the Bears trading for Nick Foles, who has played well when forced to claw his way into a starting role. Per ESPN, Foles ranks higher than Trubisky in the Bears’ fantasy projections. Here’s what’s likely to happen:

Trubisky enters camp as the incumbent starter. He barely beats out Nick Foles and enters the season as the starter. After a bad game or 2, he’s pulled in favor of Foles, who, given his history as a starter, takes over sometime in the season, and plays well enough to keep the job.

If you’re a fantasy owner, just stay away from this quagmire about to erupt between Trubisky and Foles. Even if Foles plays well and wins games, it’s likely he’ll do so with pedestrian numbers as in 2017 and to an extent, 2018.

Mitchell Trubisky Bears QB

Tread carefully and don’t be fooled by Trubisky’s less than favorable projections on ESPN.com if you bet on player productivity.

Trubisky just isn’t worth betting the over, and the trade for Foles shows that the Bears brass has lost faith in him, regardless of what the team is saying.

Please Note:
When speculation appears that a new quarterback possessing starting potential comes to town, the consensus with the coaching staff is always to quell rumors that a quarterback controversy is about to erupt.

It almost always erupts.

And it’s the case in Chicago with Trubisky. Don’t be surprised if he’s in another uniform come 2021.

Here are his projected 2020 statistics:

  • 142 completions
  • 224 attempts
  • 1,547 yards
  • 8 touchdowns
  • 5 interceptions
  • 20 carries
  • 109 yards
  • 1 touchdown

4 – Breakout: David Montgomery, RB

2019 statistics:

  • 242 carries
  • 844 yards
  • 3.7 yards per carry
  • 6 touchdowns
  • 25 receptions
  • 185 yards
  • 1 touchdown

Montgomery had a solid rookie season, logging 844 yards on 242 carries while scoring 7 total touchdowns. He won’t hit a home run with his average speed and he’ll rarely break one for a big gain.

He’ll give you between 3 and 4 yards if the Bears need 1 yard. If the Bears need 5 yards, he’ll still get you between 3 and 4 yards. That’s the back he is.

He’s comparable to former NFL running back, Leroy Hoard in terms of production.

But backs like this are fantastic at the goal line. When the Bears are at 1st or 2nd and goal to go, especially with the iffy play expected from Trubisky and Foles, Montgomery can see a lot of carries here, leading to fantasy points.

David Montgomery Bears RB

If you’re playing fantasy football, Montgomery figures to be a great RB2 and you can wait a few rounds before selecting him. If your strategy involves loading up on receivers early, then Montgomery is your guy.

As for betting the over or under on Montgomery, he should surpass 6 rushing touchdowns in 2020 and with two quarterbacks looking to manage the game, he’ll see more carries and opportunities in 2020, especially with a year’s worth of experience under his belt.

Please Note:
Per ESPN.com, Montgomery projects to garner similar numbers to his 2019 campaign, so don’t be surprised to see him go over in every category.

He’s not the typical breakout player, but it’s highly likely, given the instability at quarterback, that he’ll see more opportunities come his way, especially since Tarik Cohen is utilized more in the passing and return game. Other than Montgomery and Cohen, there’s not another viable running back on the Bears’ roster.

Here are Montgomery’s 2020 projected statistics:

  • 211 carries
  • 844 yards
  • 4.0 yards per carry
  • 6 touchdowns
  • 26 receptions
  • 216 yards
  • 1 touchdown

Conclusion

The Bears’ offense may go through quite a transition in 2020. Despite inadequate play from Trubisky in 2019, however, Robinson still played well and achieved a career-high in receptions. Look for an identical year out of him in 2020.

Cohen is the new Darren Sproles who can run, catch, and contribute in the return game. He’s an all-around football player and is the queen on the Bears’ offensive chessboard.

Trubisky and Foles, regardless of who wins the job, will both put up pedestrian numbers. But given Foles’ penchant for playing well enough to win games, he’ll ultimately get the nod.

Montgomery should see plenty of opportunities as the featured back, especially at the goal line.

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Rex Hoffman / Author

Rex Hoffman is a passionate sports writer, with over five years of experience covering sports journalism in line with the Vegas betting landscape. His favorite subjects include football, basketball, and baseball. As a Las Vegas resident, he enjoys finding an edge against the local sportsbooks and aims to share his extensive knowledge with both beginners and experienced bettors. Rex also dabbles in horse racing wagering and enjoys typical casino fare like blackjack and poker in his spare time.