David Montgomery Deserves So Much Better Than Matt Nagy

david montgomery
Dec 13, 2020; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Bears running back David Montgomery (32) scores a touchdown in the first quarter against the Houston Texans at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bears not only drafted David Montgomery with their first pick in 2019, they traded up to do so. That was clear evidence the team had high expectations for the Iowa State product. They felt he could be a feature back in their offense moving forward. For the most part, Montgomery has lived up to that. At least whenever he’s been given an actual opportunity to prove it.

Head coach Matt Nagy is a creature of habit. He’s always viewed how he wants his offense run a certain way. He even said one time the Bears didn’t bring him there to run the I-formation. Really? Even if it works? On Sunday, Montgomery ran for 113 yards and a touchdown. His first carry of the game was an 80-yard score. Logic would dictate the Bears should’ve fed him the football, right?

Nope. He ended up with only 11 carries on the afternoon.

That includes just five in the second half despite the team holding a huge lead. This marked the seventh time in his career Montgomery got 11 carries or fewer in a game. By contrast, he’s only got 20 or more carries in a game five times. This despite averaging a healthy 4.25 yards per carry whenever in such instances. The guy is a workhorse who can wear defenses out. Nagy, for whatever reason just refuses to feed him.

Montgomery has more than 14 carries in a game just four times this year. Cordarrelle Patterson has stolen several of them. This despite clear evidence that might not be the best idea since the converted wide receiver is averaging just 3.6 yards per carry. Montgomery has four runs of at least 20 yards or more. Patterson has none.

David Montgomery is chained to a coach who won’t use him

It’s clearer than ever that no matter how much Nagy wishes it weren’t true, the focal point of this Bears offense is Montgomery. When he gets fed, everything else seems to function better. Mitch Trubisky is more efficient because the pressure is off him and he can utilize play action. The offensive line finds a rhythm because they’re allowed to go forward. On top of that, the defense is able to get some sorely needed rest on the sideline.

This is old school complimentary football. A type of offense the Bears were actually good at during several periods throughout their history. If there’s one thing they’ve found success doing for decades? It’s running the ball. David Montgomery looks like he can be that Clydesdale who pulls the wagon. All he needs are the reins.

Nagy just refuses to give them to him.

The head coach is still obsessed with running the offense through the quarterback. That is an admirable quality befitting his background. Yet a smart head coach would understand reality at this point. The Bears don’t have a quarterback. Trubisky is what he is. He isn’t a franchise guy who can carry an offense on his back. Montgomery is the real identity of this offense. If Nagy wants to save his job, he better embrace it.

SOURCE© Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports
Educated to be a writer at the prestigious Columbia College in Chicago, Erik has spent the past 10 years covering the Bears.
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