Predicting the Bears Opening Week Roster: Offense
Matt Marton - USA Today Sports

Predicting the Bears Opening Week Roster: Offense

by - Senior Writer -

Although the NFL season is two months away, there is time to look at what this roster could look like come week one.

With the mini-camp portion of the offseason over and training camp roughly a month away, the Bears are getting to the point in the offseason when things start to get serious.

As you look at the roster and how this roster is currently constructed, there are plenty of positions that seem to be accounted for, but also plenty of positions that are still up for grabs. Offensively, there are fewer spots available than on the defense, but things will look vastly different on this roster this season as opposed to last season.

In the next couple of days, we will dive into this roster and discuss what it could look like come week one.

Today we will discuss the offense, with the defense coming tomorrow:

Quarterbacks (2): Justin Fields and PJ Walker

Without question, the starting QB on this team, barring injuries, will be Justin Fields, who has the making of having a breakout season. Behind him is where things get interesting, as PJ Walker and Nathan Peterman are the backups. If I had to pick right now, Walker would be the backup, but don't put it past the Bears to potentially add a veteran backup to support and mentor FIelds.

Carson Wentz is a possibility and several other aging veterans are available for the taking. Sure, adding anyone of those won't wow the fans, but that is something Fields has yet to have since Andy Dalton was here, and that could go a long way to helping his development.

Running Back (4): Khalil Herbert, D'Onta Foreman, Roschon Johnson and Travis Homer

One of the bigger camp battles this season will be the battle at RB, as three guys will be battling it out for the top spot. Khalil Herbert is the favorite right now, given his familiarity with the Luke Getsy system, but don't count out the free agent pickup D'Onta Foreman and rookie Roschon Johnson as legitimate possibilities.

Johnson was often overshadowed by Bijan Robinson in Texas, but many scouts view him as a playmaking RB with starting potential in this league. Foreman has proven he can be a legitimate go-to back when called upon, while Herbert has put up some big games in two seasons. Whoever gets the starting RB role will have plenty of help, as Travis Homer is another option as a 3rd down/rotational type of back that Getsy can count on.

Fullback (1): Khari Blasingame

Few teams carry FBs anymore, but having a FB is crucial when you are a run-first team like the Bears. Khari Blasingame is the only FB on the roster and will have no trouble locking down the FB spot.

Blasingame came into the league as a RB but moved to FB a few years ago to maximize his talent. He will get you a few yards on the ground, but he is a great run blocker out of the backfield and someone who can make plays in the passing game. Look for him to be more involved this season.

Wide Receivers (6): DJ Moore, Darnell Mooney, Chase Claypool, Velus Jr., Dante Pettis and Equanimeous St. Brown

Perhaps this team's most improved unit falls on the WR position, where Fields will have to deliver this season. DJ Moore was brought in via a trade with the Carolina Panthers and will not only be the No. 1 WR in Chicago but has a chance to be the best WR in Chicago history if he can produce consistently.

Apart from Moore, the Bears still have two other trusted options as Darnell Mooney is back 100% healthy and should slide into the slot position, with Chase Claypool hopefully emerging as the No. 2 option. Outside of that is when the real fun starts, as the Bears have plenty of options to round out the WR room.

Velus Jones Jr, Dante Pettis, and Equanimeous St. Brown are three of the favorites to take those final three spots but don't count out rookie Tyler Scott who continues to be challenged in camp. Had N'Keal Harry been retained this season, he would have been another name to throw in the mix, but regardless the WR room has more depth and talent than ever before.

Tight Ends (3): Cole Kmet, Robert Tonyan and Stephen Carlson

Looking at the TE position, it all starts and stops with Cole Kmet, who finally showed his true potential last season. Kmet has been improving in each of his three NFL seasons, but it was last year that he formed a trusted bond with Fields and became his favorite target by season's end. He has the chance for even better results this season which will be huge for the Bears.

Who plays behind Kmet is another question, but look for free-agent pickup Robert Tonyan to be one of the favorites. Not much of a yardage guy, Tonyan has always been known as a red-zone threat, and that is something that Fields hasn't had consistently. Stephen Carlson is another guy to keep an eye on as the team's third-string TE, as he is excellent in run-blocking and short-yardage situations.

Offensive Line (8): Braxton Jones, Tevin Jenkins, Nat Davis, Cody Whitehair, Darnell Wright, Lucas Patrick, Larry Borom and Alex Leatherwood

This is the one position that could change the opening week roster, but as of now, look for eight guys to make the team. Starting with the starting five, I like Braxton Jones, Teven Jenkins, Cody Whitehair, Nate Davis, and Darnell Wright as the guys, although Davis and Jones could be role players depending on how they do in camp.

Behind those five, look for Lucas Patrick to enter his second season hungry after missing most of last season with injuries, with Larry Borom looking to improve off of his rookie season. The biggest X-Factor in the offensive line room is former first-round pick Alex Leatherwood who the Bears picked up mid-season last year.

Leatherwood has the versatility to fill in across the offensive line and, if he lives up to his potential, is as good as anyone on the line. Ja’Tyre Carter is also another guy to keep an eye on in camp, as a strong showing from him could land him on the opening week roster.

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