Tarik Cohen thinks he can be the Bears' version of Kansas City's Tyreek Hill
Cohen started last season red-hot before falling off dramatically but he has a ton of talent
Through the first few weeks of the 2017 season, Chicago Bears rookie running back Tarik Cohen looked like he was going to very quickly become one of the best and most versatile playmakers in the entire league. After an NFL debut that saw him lead the Bears with eight catches, he matched that number the week after, and then took his 12 carries for 78 yards in a surprise win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 3.
After three games, Cohen had carried 24 times for 157 yards and caught 20 passes for 126 yards and a touchdown. Those figures put him on pace for a 1,500-plus total yard season, despite the fact that he had played only 48.9 percent of the team's snaps during those games.
Of course, because the Bears were coached by John Fox, Cohen did not see an increase in looks over the rest of the year, but rather got his snap-share slashed dramatically. Cohen played only 33.3 percent of the Bears' snaps the rest of the season. His total yardage pace during that time would have worked out to 541 yards over the course of a 16-game campaign. In other words, the Bears stopped using him, and his production dropped off a cliff.
Cohen thinks he can tap back into what he showed the first few weeks of the year now that the Bears have hired former Chiefs offensive coordinator Matt Nagy as their new head coach. He already knows which Chiefs player he's going to emulate as the Bears move forward as well.
"When I was at the combine, coaches would always ask me who I would compare myself to in the league," Cohen said, per The Chicago Tribune, "and I would always tell them Tyreek Hill. I feel that I can do the same kinds of things he does in the Kansas City offense. And now since we have their coach now [in Nagy], I feel like I have to live up to that. And I definitely look forward to being the same kind of playmaker."
Hill has been an immediate-impact player as a receiver, runner, and returner. Used mostly as a gadget player as a rookie, Hill became a much more complete receiver in Year 2. His running production was not nearly as explosive as it was during his first year, but he made up for it by making a ton of big plays. Cohen is not as pure a receiving threat as Hill, but he does have more experience as a runner. If Nagy can figure out a way to get him involved consistently, whether with the ball in his hands or as a Hill-style decoy to divert the defense's attention, the Bears will be better off for it.
Pick Six Newsletter
Get the day's big stories + fun stuff you love like mock drafts, picks and power rankings.
Thanks for signing up!
Keep an eye on your inbox for the latest sports news.
There was an error processing your subscription.
The 49ers may be without their franchise quarterback for the rest of the 2018 season
Aaron Rodgers was rocked by a Redskins defender but no flag was thrown
Stephen Oh has his finger on the pulse of Bill Belichick and the Patriots
Wilkerson sustained what appeared to be a serious injury to his left leg
The situation in Oakland is not great as it relates to the front office and coaching staff
Josh Nagel has his finger on the pulse of the Seahawks and Cowboys