Heading into 2013 the Bears were looking to increase production from the tight end position. After Kellen Davis failed to impress, Emery went out and picked up a tight end to rectify this issue. Who he signed is just as interesting, as he is great on the field. A solid pass catcher and run blocker, Martellus Bennett easily did what a whole squad of tight ends didn’t accomplish statistically. Catching 65 passes for 759 yards, he more than doubled the Bears entire tight end position in 2012 from 25 receptions for a measly 256 yards. Bennett’s been a welcomed addition to the Bears, and has a bright, creative personality. After releasing Greg Olsen, the Bears had been missing that middle of the field threat that Bennett provided in 2013.
Martellus has been a wonderful pickup for Phil Emery. He was very productive, played all 16 games and proved to be a great target for Cutler. Playing big roles in games showed that Martellus Bennett‘s addition has helped the Bears. In a game against the Minnesota Vikings, Bennett caught a last second corner strike from Cutler to seal a game winner on the final drive. His presence has been able to finally elevate the Bears offense to a level fans have not been accustomed to seeing in the past.
Looking to 2014 Bennett is the Bears starting tight end, after that its Dante Rosario who didn’t have much production in 2013. So behind Bennett the Bears are lacking at the position. Its possible that they look in the draft to build some depth, but with the needs on defense it wouldn’t be surprising if it was looked over. Fendi Onobun remains an intriguing option, he showed the ability to get good separation from defenders and cause match up issues. However, he still lacked the ability to completely control his body and adjust to the ball, missing open touchdowns on a multiple instances. If Onboun can shore up his blocking techniques, and prove he can catch the ball consistently he could unseat Rosario. Pairing two guys that size, in Bennett and Onobun, would cause match up nightmares. With Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery, not to mention the Bears recently moving seventh round draft pick Marquess Wilson to the no.3 wide receiver slot, the Bears have a powerhouse of an offense. Cutler would have immense targets in the red zone, and the pressure it takes off each other is immense.
If Onobun can’t pick it up, its likely they keep him on the practice squad or cut ties. Free Agency doesn’t hold many interesting players either, but Owen Daniels is available and could be an interesting addition to the Bears offense. His injury past has not been good, however he could come at a cheaper price because of it. He’s been productive and would be a good compliment to the Bears offense. Its looking more likely that the roster will sit where it currently stands heading into the 2014 season. Either way the Bears are miles ahead of where they have been in the past at the position. It doesn’t hurt that Martellus is one of the most personable players in the NFL.
About the Author: Zach Krpan
Chicago native and avid fan of the Bears and Black Hawks. Graduate in Communication and Media Studies at Depaul University in Chicago. Works as a Sales Representative for Groupon.