It’s never too early to start looking to the future, right? That is, if you can move on from the past.
With their fourth round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Chicago Bears selected Arizona running back Ka’Deem Carey, a player who has been highly scrutinized for his off-field issues.
In December 2012, Carey was charged with disorderly conduct and misdemeanor assault. It was reported that Carey slammed the fingers of his pregnant girlfriend in a door and pushed her. Charges were dropped in April 2013.
Another incident featured Carey being thrown out of an Arizona basketball game. Carey had not been sitting in the seat that corresponded with his ticket. Event staff asked Carey to leave on four occasions and eventually coordinated with police to remove the star running back. Carey reportedly exclaimed to one police officer, “Get the *expletive* out of my face.” Carey followed with a question, “Do you know who I am? I’m an All-American.”
So, maybe Carey is not the Pat Tillman off the field that we would hope every Bear to be. But, it’s hard to argue with his on-field performance.
Carey’s resume includes 2013 Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year, 2013 Consensus All-American, and 2012 Consensus All-American. In his 2012 sophomore season, Carey led the NCAA in rushing yards with 1,929. During his three years at Arizona, he compiled 4,239 rushing yards; 52 total touchdowns; 679 receiving yards and averaged 5.7 yards per carry.
A poor 40-yard dash time of 4.70, which was 28th among running backs, combined with his off-field issues prevented Carey from being selected in earlier rounds.
Now, he will most likely compete with Michael Ford for the back-up role in Chicago. Ford did not see a single rushing attempt in 2013 and many believe that the spot is Cary’s to lose.
Starting running back Matt Forte is in the peak of his career, last year registering for career highs in rushing yards and touchdowns. However, that peak may be coming to its downfall in the coming years. An ESPN Stat and Analysis report of NFL running backs reported rushing production falls after the age of 27. Matt Forte will be 29 this season.
The Bears most likely used their 117th overall pick on Carey in hopes that he can replace the ultra-productive Forte in the years to come. If Carey can keep a clean sheet off the field and translate his collegiate success to the NFL, he could be the perfect apprentice to Forte.
Carey will have his first opportunity to make an impression with Bears fans August 8th in the Bears’ first preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles.
-Matt Moore (@Matt23Moore)