UA-59049186-1 2020 Chicago Bears Preview: Wide Receiver - Good if it Goes

2020 Chicago Bears Preview: Wide Receiver

(Photo credit: Yahoo)

Allen Robinson returns after a season which saw him finish two receptions shy of the century mark and rack up 1,147 yards in the process. Then two years removed from an ACL injury, Robinson looked like his old self after a 2018 that was a bit underwhelming. Robinson was clearly Mitchell Trubisky’s favorite target a year ago and finished the season tied with Khalil Mack and Eddie Jackson in your author’s “Stars of the Game” race. Barring a contract extension that can’t come soon enough, Robinson will be a free agent after the season, giving him extra motivation to ball out this year. Between that, and what should be more stability at the quarterback position, look for a big year from number 12.

Anthony Miller should play a bigger role for the Bears this season after the team parted ways with Taylor Gabriel. A third-year player out of Memphis, Miller has shown flashes of the potential that caused the Bears to take him in the second round in 2018, but has yet to be that guy consistently. A nagging shoulder injury likely played a role in that, as did inconsistency at the quarterback position. During the off-season, Miller had surgery on his shoulder and the Bears stabilized the signal caller spot. Now it’s time for Miller to step up. He should get plenty of snaps, as he’s capable of playing both on the outside and in the slot.

Ted Ginn, Jr. comes to Chicago after playing for just about every other team in the league. Drafted ninth overall by the Dolphins in 2007, Ginn’s career has taken him from Miami to San Francisco to Carolina to Arizona to Carolina again and then to New Orleans. From your author’s intro post:

Your author does not expect a great deal from Ginn. Production similar to Gabriel’s 2019 is probably the best the team can hope for, as Ginn has never been a hugely productive receiver and is now 35 years old to boot.”

Darnell Mooney comes to the team as a 5th-round draft pick out of Tulane. Your author had cautioned against expecting too much from him too soon as receiver is one of the more difficult positions at which to adjust to the NFL, but he’s drawing praise that goes beyond the standard “oh, yeah, the rookie looks good,” so maybe there’s a chance. Your author is still somewhat bearish (no pun intended) given that the team can somewhat control the narratives coming out of camp since there are no fans there. From this season’s draft recap post:

“Mooney’s a smaller, speedy receiver with quality route running skills. A very high-upside prospect, plenty of fans are already predicting that he’ll turn out to be the steal of the draft. Mooney’s got all the tools and can play on the outside or in the slot, but does need to work on his hands. In a draft that’s less deep at wide receiver, Mooney almost certainly goes a round or two higher.”

Javon Wims enters his third year and it’s probably prove-it time for the former seventh-round pick out of Georgia. After a rookie year that saw him get into only 4 games and record as many catches, Wims played in every game in 2019, but didn’t improve much upon his 1 catch per game pace. A year ago, he caught 18 passes for 186 yards. Coming out of Georgia, Wims showed promise as a big target with solid ball skills. This year may be his last chance to show it. Reports out of camp (again, grain of salt) were that he was ahead of Ridley for a spot on the outside. However, Wims also had a fine camp a year ago and then didn’t do much during the season. Yep, you guessed it, increased stability at QB should help, but this space’s official stance on Wims at this point is to not expect too much and be pleasantly surprised should be break out.

Riley Ridley returns after a quiet rookie campaign. After being drafted in the 4th round of the 2019 draft out of Georgia, the younger brother of Falcons receiver Calvin Ridley had a rookie year that looked kind of like his college teammate Wims’s. Ridley saw action in 5 games, catching 6 passes for a total of 69 yards. Your author is not going to make the joke, because that total is not very nice at all. While Ridley is not his brother and was never expected to be, your author still expected more than what we saw a year ago. Here’s hoping for a breakout second year.


Twitter: @KSchroeder_312

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