6. Artavis Pierce, Running Back
Artavis Pierce is a player I really like. The more I see his film the more I feel he could help the Chicago Bears. He is a shifty, speedy back who averaged almost six yards (5.8) per rush in college. He could be one of those diamonds in the rough who end up contributing a lot to the offense. He had 1,042 total yards from scrimmage last season in the third running back role.
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With the Bears, Pierce will battle for the third running back spot against fellow Oregon State player Ryan Nall. Pierce is faster and more athletic than Nall and can contribute to the passing game more than Nall. Pierce had a chance to beat out Nall. He could show the coaches what he could do in a game, but won’t have that opportunity.
Nall and Pierce will battle each other during training camp. How they adjust to what the coaches tell them is very important. Starter David Montgomery and backup Tarik Cohen will take the majority of the snaps in camp despite their solid spots on the roster.
Normally, the main players get some time off during camp. That time off is cut this year. The main players will be getting a lot of snaps so they can start to get into a rhythm. That means Nall and Pierce get a limited chance to make an impression.
With how things are set up this year, Nall probably wins the job and Pierce hopefully ends up on the practice squad. The Bears had a pretty good third back last season in Kerrith Whyte but gave up on him. He went on to do good work with the Pittsburgh Steelers averaging 5.1 yards per rush and 18.9 yards per kick return. Hopefully, they don’t let another good young backup do the same thing.