Bears plan to give WR Kevin White ‘every opportunity to succeed’
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Bears coach Matt Nagy’s opinion of receiver Kevin White hasn’t changed in the last several weeks.
Echoing statements he made at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Nagy said last week at the NFL’s annual meetings in Orlando, Florida, that White will get his shot at redemption.
‘‘For me, I really, truly mean this when I say it: I am really excited to dig deep into him and put him in the best situation possible for Kevin White to succeed,’’ Nagy said. ‘‘Here is a guy we have on our roster that, to a lot of people, can get lost in the shuffle or just pushed to the side. That’s not going to happen. We’re going to give him every opportunity to succeed.’’
The Bears’ roster, though, has changed significantly since the combine. It now features better receivers. Allen Robinson is the Bears’ new No. 1 receiver after signing a three-year, $56 million contract. Taylor Gabriel (four years, $26 million) was signed to fill the slot ‘‘zebra’’ role in Nagy’s offense.
If Cam Meredith, a restricted free agent, returns — which is expected — White essentially would start training camp as the Bears’ No. 4 receiver. That would be a big fall for a player who was the seventh overall pick in 2015.
‘‘How cool would that be to be able to get this kid to come back and be a dominant player?’’ Nagy said. ‘‘You think he doesn’t want that? No, of course, he wants that. As coaches, let’s look at the glass half-full and let’s get this kid right.’’
White suffered a broken shoulder blade in Week 1 last season against the Falcons. That came after he needed two surgeries on his lower left leg in his first two seasons. He has appeared in only five games in three seasons.
In time, Nagy said he plans to watch film of White’s practices from last preseason and training camp. He’s looking forward to seeing what new receivers coach Mike Furrey, who spent eight seasons in the NFL, can do with him.
‘‘For [White] right now, it’s just going to be a confidence thing,’’ Nagy said. ‘‘If we can figure out a way to get his confidence back, he has all the physical tools.’’