For yet another season, the Chicago Bears will have a new face backing up Pro Bowl running back Matt Forte. Rookie Ka’Deem Carey was selected by the Bears in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft just for that reason. Hopefully Carey will have more success than Chester Taylor, Marion Barber and Michael Bush did over the past four seasons.
Even though Chicago invested a draft pick in Carey, don’t expect the rookie to have a fighting chance to uproot Forte. The only way Carey will see the starting lineup is if Forte happens to go down with an injury. So don’t think that he will be a prime candidate for Offensive Rookie of the Year.
However, what Carey does have a chance at is winning the No. 2 spot on the depth chart. The main competition for Carey in the backfield during training camp will be second-year back Michael Ford, four-year veteran Shaun Draughn and undrafted free agent Jordan Lynch.
Of these three players, Carey probably will only have to worry about Ford. Draughn has only 235 rushing yards in his four years in the NFL and will more than likely be an asset on special teams. As for Lynch, he could end up on the Bears’ practice squad after the 53-man roster is put into place.
Carey, a two-time Consensus All-American, has the tools to be a reliable back in Marc Trestman’s offense. The 5-foot-9, 207-pounder doesn’t have great breakaway speed, but he is built to carry the load if need be. The 2013 Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year displayed great productivity with 1,885 rushing yards last season and a nose for the end zone with 25 rushing touchdowns. If not used as a third-down option, Carey could possibly see significant time in short-yardage situations.
All in all, Chicago saw the need for some help at running back, and they got it when they drafted Carey. This could be the best No. 2 option that the Bears have had in their backfield in a long time and could possibly make an already explosive offense even better in 2014.
Clyde A. Speller is an NFL writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @ClydeASpeller.