Conversations in Canton with Randy Moss, Steve Smith give Kevin White a boost

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Conversations in Canton with Randy Moss, Steve Smith give Kevin White a boost

BOURBONNAIS, Ill. — Prior to Thursday night’s Hall of Fame Game, players from both the Bears and Baltimore Ravens lined up along the 45-yard lines of Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium to give a guard of honor of sorts to the eight soon-to-be inductees into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. One by one, these legends of football made their way from sideline to sideline while being cheered on by both teams. 

When Randy Moss got to the end of the line, he veered to his left and went over to Bears receiver Kevin White, who congratulated him on becoming a Hall of Famer. The two hadn’t met before, but White, obviously, knew who Moss was. As a kid, White would pretend like he was Moss. “Throwing the hand up, wanting to run all go balls just so I can ‘Moss’ someone,” he said. 

Moss, though, wanted to offer to words to White, too: “He just said he’s waiting on me,” White said. 

“He said some other things, but I’ll keep that between me and him,” the Bears wide receiver continued, “but he just asked if I’m healthy and that he’s waiting on me and he’s ready to see me play.”

White also had an opportunity to chat with former All-Pro wideout Steve Smith before the game, and posted a photo of him talking to Smith to his Instagram account with the caption “listen more than u speak.” 

It was at least a little surprising White, who’s only appeared in five regular season games since being drafted seventh overall in 2015, didn’t play in Thursday night’s game given the lack of live reps he’s been able to take in his brutally unlucky career. But getting those moments with Moss and Smith still made the trip to Canton well worth it for White. 

“That was pretty cool to hear coming from (Moss), one of the greatest — the greatest receiver ever to play this game. Hearing that, some good things from him and Steve Smith gave me a little extra push, an extra little confidence even though my confidence is very high. That definitely helps it either way. 

“… (They told me) basically, block out the noise and don’t let them trick you — fans, the media, whoever. Always have self-confidence and know you can play at a high level.” 

Barring a total disaster, Matt Nagy's job is safe according to hot-seat list

Barring a total disaster, Matt Nagy's job is safe according to hot-seat list

Bears coach Matt Nagy was the darling of the NFL coaching fraternity in 2018 after he led his team to a 12-4 record and Chicago's first NFC North title in nearly a decade. But that was last year, and with the Bears sitting at 6-6 and falling way short of preseason expectations, some of the shine from his 2018 Coach of the Year Award has worn off.

But even though 2019 hasn't gone as predicted, Nagy isn't among the list of coaches who are on the hot seat, according to a new list compiled by ESPN. Instead, Nagy's seat is 'cool' and his job is safe barring a complete meltdown over the final four games of the year.

"Nagy doesn't have the same job security he enjoyed last season when he was the NFL Coach of the Year, but it's a stretch to think the Bears will fire him," ESPN's Jeff Dickerson wrote. "The team has struggled across the board on offense -- Nagy's specialty -- and the coach has shouldered his share of the blame. Still, the Bears are 18-10 in the regular season under Nagy. For comparison sake, John Fox went 13-34 in Chicago. Nagy isn't going anywhere."

It's pretty remarkable how far the Bears have come in two seasons under Nagy, even though their record this year doesn't scream success. If Chicago doesn't win another game this season, their six wins would equal the highest total in the four years preceding Nagy's arrival. If the Bears finish 8-8, it would be only the third time since 2011 that they were .500 or better. Chicago had just eight wins combined in 2016 and 2017.

Sure, Bears fans were hoping for a Super Bowl run in 2019 and Nagy was supposed to be the offensive genius who spearheaded the charge. It's true he's regressed as a play-caller this year, but it's only his second season as an NFL head coach. Much like his young quarterback, he's going through some growing pains and learning on the job.

But compared to the coaches who came before him -- John Fox and Marc Trestman -- Nagy is a beacon of hope for a bright future in Chicago.

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Bears land high-profile QB in latest 2020 NFL Mock Draft

Bears land high-profile QB in latest 2020 NFL Mock Draft

The 2020 NFL draft is still more than four months away, but it hasn't stopped draft experts from publishing their early mock drafts. And fortunately for Bears fans, most mock drafts now extend beyond just the first round.

Bleacher Report's Matt Miller published a new three-round mock draft Wednesday which has the Bears spending their first of two second-round selections on Georgia quarterback, Jake Fromm. The Fromm pick keeps with the trending narrative that general manager Ryan Pace will look to add competition for Mitch Trubisky this offseason.

Fromm would make a ton of sense for the Bears. He isn't overflowing with physical gifts and may end up settling in as an average NFL starter when it's all said and done, but he'd be a great insurance policy if Trubisky doesn't breakout in 2020. Fromm would provide Chicago with another young and talented option at quarterback who the Bears can insert into the lineup early next year if Trubisky fails.

The problem with this mock selection is that it might never have a chance to come to fruition. Fromm could sneak into the end of the first round and be off the board well before the Bears pick, which right now would be in the late-40's, early-50's.

With their second pick in the second round, Miller has the Bears taking Michigan offensive guard, Ben Bredeson. A veteran of more than 50 starts at guard, Bredeson would provide the Bears with the kind of physical toughness the interior of the offensive line has been missing since Kyle Long's injuries started mounting up.

Chicago isn't about to give up on 2018 second-round pick James Daniels, and Cody Whitehair appears set at center for as long as Trubisky is quarterback. But Rashaad Coward has done little to suggest he's the long-term answer at right guard which makes a prospect like Bredeson a logical target as a potential starter right away.

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