Under the new offensive coordinator Adam Gase, the Chicago Bears are likely to pound the ground with the football in 2015. That means more handoffs for veteran running back Matt Forte, who tallied 266 carries last season.
Forte weighed in on the plan of action for the year, per Adam Jahns of the Chicago Sun-Times. Forte said:
“When you run the ball, it’s more like an attack feeling. They like smash-mouth football, where you can bloody somebody’s nose and run and hit people.
“And then as a running back, you can get rhythm and kind of wear on defenses and wear them down, where that pass rush will be a lot less harder in the fourth quarter.”
More carries for Forte should amount to fewer potentials for a misfire from quarterback Jay Cutler. A fine example of this took place last Thanksgiving game when the Detroit Lions walloped Chicago 34-17. Forte had only five carries compared to Cutler’s 48 passing attempts.
Forte explained what went wrong last year, which included a dig at ex-head coach Marc Trestman:
“Anybody who has watched film from last year or anybody who is a smart coach knows that we can’t, especially being in Chicago, just throw the ball every down. We have to be balanced.”
It is interesting that Gase wants to return to grass roots with a heavy ground attack after spending two seasons in Denver where the Broncos threw the second-most in 2013 and the ninth-most in 2014. But then again, Cutler is no Peyton Manning.
When Manning’s health started to decline towards the end of the season last year, we did see an increase in carries by running back C.J. Anderson. He finished the year with 140 over the final six games.
As for the Bears’ plan for 2015, the ball couldn’t be in more capable hands than those of Forte, who managed a total of 1,846 yards last season.