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Kyle Fuller deemed an "unsung hero"


Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller in a game against the Ravens in 2017.

In a story in which writer Matt Harmon selects one "unsung hero" on all 32 NFL teams, his choice for the Bears is cornerback Kyle Fuller.

After missing all of the 2016 season with a knee injury, the 2014 first-round draft pick recorded 68 tackles, two interceptions and a career-high 22 pass breakups while starting all 16 games in 2017. He was one of only two NFL players this season with at least 65 tackles and 20 pass breakups.

Fuller's six pass breakups in a Week 16 win over the Browns were the most by any player in the NFL in 2017 and his 22 pass breakups this season tied for the second most by a Bears player since 1991.

"Injuries and inconsistency defined Fuller's early career, and it looked like he was destined to end up as a first-round bust for the Bears," Harmon wrote. "The team elected not to pick up his fifth-year option after injuries cost him the entire 2016 season, leaving the cornerback with no guarantees on his future heading into 2017.

"Fuller deserves major credit for turning in his best season at a critical point in his career. Just 46.4 percent of passes thrown when Fuller was the nearest defender were completed this season, good for a top-12 mark among all corners who took over 200 passing snaps.

"The Bears will now have to decide on a player they approached with caution heading into the year. As a soon-to-be 26-year-old corner coming off a breakout season, Fuller should cash in on the open market.

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