When talking about the offense most people around Halas Hall, from coaches to players, have been pretty optimistic. There are two new quarterbacks, a slew of additional weapons, and of course the eternal hope that comes with OTAs and an 0-0 record. But David Montgomery is not one of those guys who’s wearing rose-colored glasses this summer. In fact, he’s still not over last season.
“It wasn’t enough for me last year, knowing the untapped potential that I have,” Montgomery said. “As far as my leadership, I don’t feel like I did as well as I could have done. It was definitely a motivational tool for me to take the proper time that I needed to attack the offseason properly, as far as the way I plan on leading this year, the way I plan on helping this team.”
For Montgomery, these aren’t empty words. He has specific things in mind that he wants to do in order to be a better leader.
“Just be more vocal,” Montgomery said. “Be able to stand behind what I say and allow my words to carry a lot of strength when I speak… Doing all things right at all times. You can’t be a half-assed leader, you have to be a full on leader. You have to let the guys know you’re here for the greater good of the team at all times.
“I don’t think I left it all out on the field like I should have. I think I could have done better for my guys around me... That’s what the offseason’s for, for me to go back to the drawing board, to fix things that I feel as if I didn’t do well on and try to improve them. I know this year I’m not here to let my guys down. I’m here for whatever may come my way.”
It’s unclear what that “whatever” may be that comes Montgomery’s way. On one hand, he became a bigger focal point of the offense following the bye week last season. If the offensive line continues to improve, that emphasis on Montgomery could continue too. On the other hand, the Bears will be getting Tarik Cohen back from injury, and added veteran Damien Williams and rookie Khalil Herbert. That’s a lot of guys to share carries, so Montgomery’s workload could shrink again. Either way, Montgomery says he doesn’t mind. He’s looking forward to having a successful running back room, as a whole.
Individually, he still does feel he has something to prove, but not to anyone other than himself.
“The entirety of my career of being able to carry a football and do it successfully, I’ve had a chip on my shoulder. But as it happens so often from wherever I was then to where I am now, the chip grows. It’s no longer a chip. It’s been a boulder for a while now. It’s more so not about proving anybody wrong, but proving myself right.”