Bears Twitter mailbag: On ‘Chicken Salad,’ QB debate & receiver search

The Sun-Times’ experts can answer your Bears questions all week on Twitter. Here’s a sampling of queries sent to @PatrickFinley, who responds with more than 140 characters:

If you knew the answer why, the Bears would make you richer than Akiem Hicks. What has to concern the Bears is that their rash this season — starters Cam Meredith, Kevin White and Jerrell Freeman have suffered significant injuries — came after they made offseason changes to their training and practice schedules. GM Ryan Pace said last week that “I think we’re going to see that pay dividends this year” — but no luck so far.

Tarik Cohen led the Bears in rushing Sunday. (Getty Images)

Glennon didn’t turn the ball over. Do you know how rarely that happened last year? In 16 games, the Bears’ starting quarterback threw at least one touchdown and committed zero turnovers only four times. Glennon also seemed poised in the fourth quarter, marching the Bears to one touchdown and coming close to a second.

“From the first snap to the last snap, Mike was Mike,” tight end Zach Miller said.

Presumably — and probably in the next couple weeks. He returned to practice last week, albeit on a limited basis, but didn’t make any promises. “I’m not going out there unless I feel like myself,” Long said. Returning to Raymond James Stadium, where Long shredded his ankle Nov. 13, would be fitting, but might be a stretch.

The Bears scored as many touchdowns when he took a snap from center as they did with Glennon.Cohen didn’t play running back until his junior year of high school. He was a defensive back and — get this — an outside linebacker in high school, too.

The belief before Sunday was that Cohen was elusive enough to avoid vicious blows. That obviously didn’t happen against the Falcons — but to the rookie’s credit, he popped up quickly.

“Not only does he take the hit, but he takes the hit and he’s juiced about it,” Hicks said. “I don’t know if that says there’s something wrong with him. But he likes it.”

The Bears have two offensive playmakers — Cohen and Jordan Howard — and need to get them on the field at the same time. Can they split Cohen out, the way the Chiefs do Tyreek Hill?

He played eight snaps and wasn’t targeted — hardly the impact the Bears hoped for when they drafted him in the second round. It will take Shaheen a while to adjust from Div. II to the NFL. Expect the Bears to use him more; they’ll need his size in the end zone, particularly with their receiving corps thin.

Royal knows the playbook, but if the Bears thought he could contribute, they wouldn’t have cut him loose. Shorts won’t play football this year after having his third knee surgery in seven months this summer. It’s unclear if Grasu has any trade value; he hasn’t put a regular-season snap on tape since 2015.

Fact is, few receivers on the street can help the Bears. As for a trade, Pace must weigh whether he wants to move future assets; the Bears, after all, should be more focused on succeeding in 2018 and 2019 than this year.

Follow me on Twitter @patrickfinley

Email: pfinley@suntimes.com

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