Finally the Bears first preseason bout gave us a look into this new team and how players stack up in their positions. Looking at what we saw out of the running backs there may be a shakeup brewing.
As it stands the RB room, from RB1-RB3, consists of David Montgomery, Khalil Herbert, and rookie Trestan Ebner. It’s unlikely Montgomery’s starting spot is at risk, but could Herbert lose reps to Ebner sooner rather than later? If what we saw in game one of the preseason continues, well it’s definitely possible.
Due to injury Bears RB1 David Montgomery sat out of the preseason opener against Kansas City, leaving rushing duties to second year RB Khalil Herbert and rookie Trestan Ebner. Of course currently sitting higher on the depth chart, thanks his fairly impressive rookie season, Herbert got the early looks in the game. In his time on the field Saturday however, Herbert compiled only 20 yards over 7 carries and went 0-3 in receptions in a little over a quarter of play. Shortly after the start of the second quarter Ebner took over and looked pretty good doing it
In his six rushing attempts Ebner picked up a total of 31 yards and added 12 receiving yards and a touchdown with his lone target in the passing game. In comparison to Herbert Ebner’s work on the ground, while not dramatically different statistically, saw a little more burst resulting in 5.2 YPC with Herbert coming in with 2.9 YPC. In addition to his rushing efficiency Ebner shows more promise in the passing game, something he displayed while playing at Baylor where he averaged 25 receptions for 303 yards. It’s this receiving potential that I think really gives Ebner a chance to rise through the ranks in this new offense brought in by noted RPO specialist OC Luke Getsy.
While this is only one game, and a preseason one at that, it opens the door for Ebner to continue to work his way into more playing time. I certainly think there’s a little competition to be had between the rookie and second year RBs, a competition that could, to the surprise of many, see Ebner come out the new RB2. There’s plenty of football left for either guy to prove themselves.