The Chicago Bears starting lineup is probably among the most boring in the NFL. Mostly because expectations are there will be few changes to it. A total of 19 of the original 22 starters from last season are back in 2019 with safety Adrian Amos, cornerback Bryce Callahan, and running back Jordan Howard being the exceptions.
They will be replaced by Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Buster Skrine and David Montgomery respectively. Aside from that, everybody assumes their customary spots. Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd are back at outside linebacker. Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara are back at corner. Mitch Trubisky is back at quarterback while Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, and Anthony Miller remain his receivers.
There is however one area that Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com believes will see a slight shift. Something that has been hinted at multiple times for the last few months. He projects that left guard James Daniels will move inside to center while Cody Whitehair takes over his spot at guard.
“The Bears have said they might flip the positions of Pro Bowl center Cody Whitehair and second-year guard James Daniels. That move aside, this is a very stable line that improved with better coaching last season. It’s a different group, however, when Kyle Long isn’t healthy.”
Chicago Bears starting lineup would be a mystery up front with that move
It’s hard to understand the reasoning behind such a move. Whitehair went to the Pro Bowl as a center last season. Would it not make sense to keep him there at this point? Then again this is something the Bears have considered dating back to when Daniels was drafted in 2018. They didn’t do it at the time because they felt it would be an easier NFL transition to play guard.
Now that the Iowa grad has that experience under his belt, they may feel he’s ready to play they spot they always planned for him too. Daniels was an outstanding center in college. Many felt he should’ve been a 1st round pick at that position but some health setbacks got in the way.
By contrast it’s easy to forget the Bears had originally planned for Whitehair to play guard back in 2016. That was before Hroniss Grasu, their starting center tore his ACL. That forced them to shift Whitehair to the middle in a pinch. He played well enough to a point where they chose to not move him. Now it seems they feel a better option exists and wish to shift him back to where he seems most comfortable.