Bears

Laremy Tunsil's bizarre night highlights wild Day 1 of NFL Draft

usatsi_9273184.jpg
USA Today Sports Images

Laremy Tunsil's bizarre night highlights wild Day 1 of NFL Draft

The NFL Draft is always full of surprises, but the 2016 version may take the cake.

Before the Los Angeles Rams and Philadelphia Eagles were letting the clock wind down to zero before making their inevitable selections of California quarterback Jared Goff and North Dakota State signal-caller Carson Wentz, a bizarre story broke that sent shockwaves throughout the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago.

Just before NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell kicked off the draft, a video was tweeted out from the personal account of Mississippi offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil that shows him smoking an unknown substance out of gas mask. 

Rumors spread around the league that the person that leaked and tweeted the video was Tunsil's stepfather. Tunsil and his agent immediately addressed the situation, although the damage had already been done.

"I recreated this account to publicly apologize for the recent video posted. I promise to work hard on and off the field. #NFLDraft2016" (that account has sense been deleted)

"We've heard. All the teams know about it," Suzy Kolber said via Tunsil's agent Jimmy Sexton. "The account was hacked. This video MIGHT be quite old, going back to high school."

The saga then took another interesting turn less than an hour later when two photos of text conversations between Tunsil and what appeared to be an Ole Miss staff member were published on Tunsil's Instagram account that show Tunsil asking for rent/bill money.

Tunsil, once considered to be the No. 1 overall pick, slid all the way down to the Miami Dolphins who used the No. 13 pick on him. 

Shortly after being selected, NFL staffers brought Tunsil to the media room at the Auditorium Theatre for his introductory press conference which turned out to be a horrible idea for both Tunsil and the future of the Mississippi football program.

Tunsil was asked about the exchange of money between him and his coach, which he denied. Then was asked again, in which he admitted to before PR rushed him away from the podium.

What a wild Day 1. At least, we'll always have Mike Ditka's mustache.

Wait, what?

Bears backfield ranked fourth-best in NFL

Bears backfield ranked fourth-best in NFL

The Chicago Bears have a really good problem in their backfield. Both Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen will demand touches in 2018 and are each starting-quality running backs. Howard is the more traditional first and second-down back while Cohen offers top-tier playmaking ability.

The duo is so talented that they were recently ranked the fourth-best backfield in the NFL.

The Chicago Bears' Jordan Howard has emerged as one of the NFL's top rushers. He finished his rookie season with 1,313 yards, second-most in the NFL. Last season, he rushed for 1,122 yards and 4.1 yards per carry even though Chicago had the league's least threatening passing attack (175.7 yards per game).

Howard isn't the only standout back on the roster, though. Tarik Cohen is a supremely talented runner and receiver and a perfect complement to Howard. Last season, he amassed 370 rushing yards, 53 receptions and 353 receiving yards.

The Bears' backfield was behind only the Rams, Saints and Chiefs.

Howard set Chicago's rookie rushing record with 1,313 yards in 2016 and became the first Bears running back to start his career with back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons. He should be the Bears' primary back, but coach Matt Nagy expressed genuine excitement over Cohen's skill set which suggests he plans on getting him the ball quite a bit this season.

Regardless of how the touches play out, the Bears will present opposing defenses with one of the most challenging ground games in the NFL.

    Tarik Cohen was NFL's best big-play RB in 2017

    Tarik Cohen was NFL's best big-play RB in 2017

    Tarik Cohen's rookie season with the Chicago Bears was an impressive blend of running, receiving and special teams play. He quickly became a household name. The combination of his diminutive frame and oversized personality made him a fan favorite, especially when he started gaining yards in chunks.

    In fact, of all running backs with a minimum of 80 carries last season, Cohen had the highest percentage of runs that went for 15 or more yards, according to Pro Football Focus.

    Cohen will have a big role in new coach Matt Nagy's offense this season because of everything he offers a play-caller. He's a weapon as a receiver out of the backfield and can chew up yards on the ground like any traditional running back. He's a hold-your-breath talent who can turn a bad play into a touchdown in the blink of an eye.

    Cohen had 370 rushing yards, 353 receiving yards and three offensive touchdowns in what can be described as a limited role last year. John Fox and Dowell Loggains didn't seem to ever figure out how to best use Cohen's skill set. That should be no issue for Nagy and Mark Helfrich, the team's new offensive coordinator, who both bring a creative offensive approach to Chicago.

    Jordan Howard will be the starter and will do most of the heavy lifting. But Cohen is going to have a much bigger role than he had as a rookie, and that should result in more big plays and points on the board.