There are many a Chicago Bears story to cover right now. It’s hard to believe that’s true given this team was 12-4 last year. There isn’t much drama to speak of. Yet some significant changes were made. Chuck Pagano took over for Vic Fangio as defensive coordinator. Jordan Howard was traded to the Philadelphia Eagles. Former Packer Ha Ha Clinton-Dix was signed.
It has been a fun offseason filled with unexpected twists and turns. There is one that people seem to have overlooked. It came courtesy of an unexpected shift on the offensive depth chart. At the start of Organized Team Activities, head coach Matt Nagy revealed that offensive tackle Bradley Sowell had been moved to tight end.
While most focused on what he’d be doing at his new position, they ignored a far more interesting story. The fact that Rashaad Coward was now the unquestioned primary backup offensive tackle. A remarkable turn of events considering where he was just a year ago.
Rashaad Coward is the best Chicago Bears story
Coward being in his current position is hard to believe. For those who forgot, he was an undrafted free agent defensive tackle when he joined the Bears in 2017. However, he was stuck on a loaded depth chart. His future on the team didn’t look bright. That’s when Fangio informed new offensive line coach Harry Hiestand about him and the possibility he could shift to tackle.
“Vic Fangio pointed out when I first got here that we’ve got a young guy [Coward] who really has some good traits about him as a football player. He’s tough. He works his tail off. He’s learning on the job really well right now. Very positive growth.”
Coward embraced the move and showcased surprising capability in the 2018 preseason considering he’d never played it before. He never got a chance to play last season but he did enough to earn a roster spot behind Sowell. Now with Sowell out of the way, Coward has taken another step up the ladder. A surefire sign he’s made even more progress in the past year.
Bobby Massie doesn’t appear in any danger of giving up the starting right tackle job anytime soon. Still, Coward is 24-years-old. Time is on his side. Could he climb all the way to the top?