“… I was overjoyed with excitement [to join the Sox] and just ready to get going and hopefully working my way up to the big leagues with them.”
With a chance at likely the best contract of his football career, Hicks is motivated for a big year after a productive first season with the Bears.
Charles Leno’s motivation should be at a peak — he will be a free agent after this season, so a big year could be a bonanza.
Kyle Long has been considered pound-for-pound the Bears’ best player in recent years, but he has a lot to prove in 2017.
Kevin White is the team’s second-biggest X-factor behind Mike Glennon.
If Zach Miller is healthy, he could be a much-needed veteran safety valve for newcomer Mike Glennon.
Jordan Howard figures to be as close to a sure thing as the Bears have on offense, but that’s part of the challenge he faces in his second season.
Mike Glennon faces a difficult task of being immediately productive in an offense he is still learning, with players he has never played with before.
If the starting job were an open competition instead of Glennon’s no matter what, there’s no reason to believe that Trubisky would not be a contender.
Hicks’ ascent as an impact player is a big key to the Bears’ hopes for a quantum leap from 3-13 to playoff contender.