clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Bears still figuring out cornerback Kyle Fuller

Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller. (AP)

BOCA RATON, Fla. — Cornerback Kyle Fuller’s 2015 season left the Bears encouraged, but also concerned. His play was just too erratic for their full liking.

“Kyle’s got room for improvement like we all do,” coach John Fox said Wednesday during the NFC coaches breakfast at the NFL owners meetings. “It’s in there, just like our team. We were good in spots. We have to learn how to be good consistently. That’s individually, as a group, as a football team.

“[Fuller is] developing and learning what that is, not resisting. He’s a great kid, but [it’s] just being that above-the-line player consistently.”

Fox’s comments stood in contrast to the praise being lavished on veteran cornerback Tracy Porter.

General manager Ryan Pace said re-signing Porter was a top priority in their free-agency plans.

“It’s just how he played for us, our background with him, his leadership in a young secondary,” Pace said. “All those things kind of connected to make that a priority to get him back.”

Fox described Porter, who turns 30 in August, as the Bears’ most productive corner last season. He also said Porter improved the defense’s overall speed when he replaced Alan Ball as a starter in Week 3.

Porter led the Bears with 22 pass breakups and had one interception.

“He was our matchup guy,” Fox said. “I thought he had some big games…. He got his hands on some balls, and he’s a guy we wanted back.”

By no means are the Bears giving up on Fuller, though. Pace said he’s getting “better and better” and thinks Porter is a positive influence.

Fuller, the Bears’ first-round pick in 2014, started every game last season and broke up 15 passes and had two interceptions. But his mental mistakes, which included two pass-interference penalties in the first two weeks, stood out.

“I feel like Kyle’s a guy that got more comfortable in the defense and got more confidence,” Pace said. “We feel like he’s still an ascending player who’ll be better in Year 2 in this defense.”

Follow me on Twitter @adamjahns

Email: ajahns@suntimes.com