In 2022 the Bears had the best rushing attack in the NFL, with 3,014 yards. With the running backs combining for 1,650 of those rushing yards. Coming off that successful rushing season, the Bears are not looking to stop running the ball in 2023. They showed this by adding veteran D’onta Forman and rookie Roschon Johnson during the offseason. Alongside them is third-year running back Khalil Herbert.
Each of these backs has a different running style, which makes watching the trio perform this season interesting. The three different running styles may make it difficult for teams to gameplan for this offense.
At 6-foot and 236 pounds, Foreman runs with power. Foreman was finally able to put his power on full display last season when he got the starting job in Carolina. With that opportunity, he rushed for 914 yards and five touchdowns. That type of productivity led Forman to his best season in the NFL. The Bears signed Foreman with the hope he can keep up that productivity.
Foreman can achieve 1,000 rushing yards for the first time in his career if he receives the bulk of the Bears’ carries. The spot Foreman will excel on the Bears in short-yardage and goalline situations. Since he is the most powerful running back the Bears have.
The Bears selected this 5-foot-9, 212-pound running back in 2021. Since entering the league, Herbert has run with great speed and elusiveness. In his rookie year, Herbert rushed for 433 yards on 103 carries, averaging 4.2 yards a carry. That type of production from a rookie is great.
After the production of his rookie season, Herbert got more opportunities to showcase his skills last season. Gathering 731 yards on 129 carries which averaged 5.7 yards a carry. Thanks to his elusiveness, Herbert also made 29 defenders miss on tackles last season. Sadly, his season got cut short due to an injury, or he might have got 1,000 yards rushing. With Herberts’ speed, he could easily reach 1,000 rushing yards this season, depending on his volume of carries.
Even though the Bears do not pass to their running backs much, Herbert has shown he can pass catch. Through Herberts’ first two seasons, his catch percentage is 82.1%. Which means he catches almost everything thrown his way. Herbert has never had over 100 yards receiving, but he got close his rookie year with 96 receiving yards. If Herbert plays all 17 games, he will have 100 yards receiving this season.
Drafted in the fourth round this year, the 6-foot, 222-pound running back enters the league from Texas. Johnson’s running ability consists of both power and speed. Throughout Johnson’s four years in college, he amassed 2,190 rushing yards and 23 rushing touchdowns. That is great production for a second-string running back his whole tenure at Texas.
Johnson also showed the ability to catch that ball during his time at Texas, with 420 receiving yards and three receiving touchdowns. Even though those numbers may not pop off the page, they are respectable for a backup. Getting Johnson as many snaps as possible this season would be a good idea.
It will be interesting to see which running back gets designated as the starter this season. No matter which of the running backs the Bears decide to start in 2023 the running game will be productive.
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