If you are at all like me, every day since the Bears training camp opened up, you have been consuming as much content as possible. You have watched Tanner Gentry snag that ball out of nowhere, making a highlight reel catch in 1-on-1 drills. You have seen Tarik Cohen move around the field with next level agility.
Perhaps most importantly, any video on twitter with Trubisky throwing the football, you watch on repeat over and over.
This weekend I followed my wife around Ulta like a zombie while I watched Bears training camp through periscope. I can’t get enough. Every day I wake up excited to listen to podcasts, read articles and watch the beginning of this season’s journey.
However, being this dialed in, I have noticed something that is absolutely perplexing to me. I am finding Bears fans who can’t find the joy I am because of their negativity. While I understand being down after last year’s record, the unbridled negativity I have experienced from some fans merits a quick response. I would like to make a case for optimism.
The importance of drafting well
We have all seen the articles regarding the number of players left on the roster from previous general managers. In case you haven’t, allow me to summarize, it isn’t pretty. The result of that, besides losses, is that you don’t get to experience the ride of having young players ascend into dominance.
When you look at the draft classes from 2010 to 2014, the only player left on the roster who has turned into a stud is Kyle Long. Watching Kyle and ascend to the player he has become was a lot of fun, but outside of that, there wasn’t much to watch (I am leaving out players who are now playing for other teams).
Well, guess what? That has changed in a big way.
This year we get to look forward to so many things.
- Can Jordan Howard take the next step and perhaps lead the league in rushing?
- Just how dominant can our interior line be with Cody Whitehair taking a step forward in his sophomore season?
- Just how high is Cameron Meredith’s ceiling?
- Will Eddie Goldman come back stronger (and quicker) than ever to make our D-Line terrifying for opposing QB’s?
- Will Leonard Floyd, with a frame that appears to be much more NFL ready, be a double digit sack man?
And don’t let me forget Trubisky! I can’t remember the last time I was so pumped to watch preseason games!
The point is you can choose to be negative or you can choose to be excited about all our young talent. For the first time in what feels like a long time, I am excited about players all over the field.
We have young, home grown talent that looks like it’s ready to make a big impact. What makes the destination that much more rewarding is the journey you took to get there. Guess what Bears fans, this is that journey.
The Bears invested heavily at the most important position in all of sports. They have young players at skill positions who are primed for career years. They also happen to a rookie class that has boom or bust potential.
That, to me, is great theater. Whether or not the Bears investments result in a significant improvement on last year’s record is yet to be seen. However, games in August haven’t been this compelling in a very long time.