Bears

Tarik Cohen admits he didn't take care of his body in 2019

Tarik Cohen admits he didn't take care of his body in 2019

Much has been made of Mitch Trubisky's regression in 2019 when his career outlook went from a player on the rise to a quarterback in a competition for the starting job this summer. The defense received its fair share of criticism, too, after failing to live up to the lofty preseason expectations that surrounded the group. But not much attention has been paid to Tarik Cohen, whose disappearing act from the offense was one of the team's biggest setbacks.

Cohen emerged as a true offensive weapon for Matt Nagy in 2018 after setting career highs in rushing yards (444) and receiving yards (725). His eight total touchdowns were also a career watermark.

Cohen was anything but a weapon last season, however. His combined yardage was less than what he totaled as a receiver the year before. Not great. 

So, what gives? According to Cohen, part of the reason for his regression was his body. The wear and tear of 2019 took its toll.

‘‘I’ve been doing yoga now, stretching more often and just like the small training room — in-house things you do to keep your body durable,’’ Cohen said. ‘‘And to keep the wear-and-tear of the season off of you longer. I really slacked on that. I always had older guys that would keep me on that, keep me in line.’’

The older vet Cohen is referring to is Benny Cunningham, who the Bears released last August.

An explanation for Cohen's lack of production helps, at least a little. But it's concerning what that explanation is. Now entering this fourth season in the league, Cohen should be fully assimilated to life in the NFL and what he has to do to keep his body fresh for a full 16 games. It's details like this that can quickly turn a team from a 12-4 contender into a middling 8-8 club.

Cohen should have some extra motivation to be at his best in 2020. He's scheduled for unrestricted free agency next offseason and if he produces like he did in 2018, he'll be an appealing target for teams looking to add a satellite back.

Report: NFL, NFLPA close to signing updated CBA with COVID-19 conditions

Report: NFL, NFLPA close to signing updated CBA with COVID-19 conditions

The NFL could be one step closer to returning, soon. According to Ian Rapoport, the NFL and NFLPA are close to signing their updated collective bargaining agreement for playing in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The two sides agreed to a new CBA back in March but came back to the table to revise after the global pandemic hit the United States hard.

This news comes after the NFLPA player representatives voted 29-3 in favor of the changes on Friday.

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The new deal allows for 16-man practice squads, no preseason games for 2020, and high-risk and voluntary opt-outs for players. According to Tom Pelissero, high-risk players who opt out will receive a $350,000 stipend. Voluntary opt-outs for non-high-risk players will receive a $150,000 salary advance. Contracts will toll in each case, meaning it will be treated as a regular year of service time.

According to Ian Rapoport, training camp will now include a 20-day ramp-up period with no more than 14 padded practices.

In addition, Rapoport reports that rosters will need to be trimmed down to 80 players by Aug. 16, and no more than 80 people will be allowed in team buildings at a time.

"The NFL clubs and the NFL Players Association approved an agreement that broadly resolves all outstanding issues relating to the opening of training camps and start of the 2020 season," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. "Training camps will begin as scheduled.

"We have worked collaboratively to develop a comprehensive set of protocols designed to minimize risk for fans, players, and club and league personnel. These plans have been guided by the medical directors of the NFL and the NFLPA and have been reviewed and endorsed by independent medical and public health experts, including the CDC, and many state and local public health officials.

“The season will undoubtedly present new and additional challenges, but we are committed to playing a safe and complete 2020 season, culminating with the Super Bowl."


RELATED: Success of Bears' coronavirus 'bubble' rests on player responsibility

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COVID-19 concerns cause Bears' Jordan Lucas to opt-out of 2020 NFL season

COVID-19 concerns cause Bears' Jordan Lucas to opt-out of 2020 NFL season

The Bears announced a handful of moves on Monday morning, with the most notable being that safety Jordan Lucas has decided to opt-out of the 2020 NFL season. 

Lucas is the second player on the roster to opt-out, along with defensive tackle Eddie Goldman. The safety signed as a free agent back in March, having previously spent time mostly as a special teams guy for the Dolphins and Chiefs. 

Additionally, the team announced that defensive tackle John Jenkins and tight end Eric Saubert have both been taken off the reserve/COVID-19 list. Jenkins will be tasked with filling much of the role that Goldman's absence creates. 

Lastly, the team waived offensive lineman Dino Boyd. An undrafted free agent who originally signed with Kansas City in 2019, Boyd spent the final seven weeks of 2019 as a member of the Bears' practice squad.