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Chalk Talk


Chalk Talk: Why didn't Montgomery get more touches?

Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of questions from fans on

I kept hearing that David Montgomery was going to make a huge impact and then he only had six carries against the Packers. What gives?
Arthur L.
Geneva, Illinois

The Bears offense isn't easy to learn, so it appears that they intend to ease rookie running back David Montgomery into action. Like you mentioned, the third-round pick from Iowa State had six carries for 18 yards and also caught one pass for 27 yards in the season opener. Here's what coach Matt Nagy had to say about Montgomery being utilized more than he was against the Packers: "I think, to the general fan, that would be great. The hard part is a rookie guy coming in and learning; there are a lot of intricacies to our offense, with rules and assignments, not just with running the ball but in pass protection and running routes, different things. So we're kind of easing him into it. I know everybody wants instant gratification and wants the great fantasy stats right away from Week 1. And we want production. I love the kid. I think the kid's going to have a very bright future, but there's going to be a little bit of a balance as to we figure out what's best and how to use him, along with Mike [Davis] and Tarik [Cohen]."

I thought that Trey Burton would have made a big difference had he been able to play against the Packers. Do you think he'll be ready to return a week from Sunday versus the Broncos?
Paul K.
Waukegan, Illinois

Coach Matt Nagy was hopeful following Thursday night's loss to the Packers that tight end Trey Burton will be able to play against the Broncos. Burton was a game-time decision; he worked out before the game before the Bears decided to deactivate him. Here's what Nagy said about the possibility of Burton playing in Denver: "I hope so, yeah. I don't want to say yes or no either way, but I do feel like he was really close [Thursday], so we'll see how the week of practice goes with him and hopefully he can."

With three running backs active, why did the Bears hand the ball off to receiver Cordarrelle Patterson on a crucial third-and-one play Thursday night?
Ben O.
Itasca, Illinois

Cordarrelle Patterson is listed as a receiver, but he has played running back during his NFL career, most notably last season when he started two games at the position for the Patriots, including one that coincidentally was against the Packers. At 6-2 and 238 pounds, he's bigger than running backs Mike Davis (5-9, 221), Tarik Cohen (5-6, 191) and David Montgomery (5-10, 222). The issue on the play you're referring to was not that Patterson was given the ball, but that the interior of the Bears offensive line—it looked to be center James Daniels—allowed Packers nose tackle Kenny Clark to blow up the play in the backfield, resulting in a two-yard loss. Here's what coach Matt Nagy said about the play: "We could've had Walter Payton back there and he wasn't getting anything. It wouldn't have mattered. But with that said, that's part of the beauty of what [Patterson] does. He's able to do that. Anybody that watches the way he's run in other scenarios like that, he's done some damage back there."

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