It should come as no surprise that the Chicago Bears are on the search for a quarterback. With names like Deshaun Watson and Russell Wilson floating around the trade market, the team is expected to take an aggressive approach to the position this offseason. This could include addressing the position in the draft. Regardless if they acquire a starting-caliber player or not, the team needs to add young talent at the position. Backup roles have been used on older players in past years with little success. Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy should be searching for a project in the later rounds instead of sticking with the Tyler Bray's of the world. Texas Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger could be their guy.
Who Is Sam Ehlinger?
When Matt Nagy discussed what he wants in a quarterback, he pointed at versatility. Being named a starter as a true freshman, Ehlinger was thrown to the wolves early on in his college career. He responded well to the pressure, showing a versatile style through the air and on the ground. He became a four-year starter and yearly Heisman candidate for the Texas Longhorns. While he was surrounded with questionable talent and high expectations, Ehlinger delivered, carrying the Texas offense on a yearly basis. In his four seasons, he produced the following numbers through the air:
He also added some impressive numbers on the ground, being the focal point of the offense in nearly every start at Texas.
To put it lightly, Sam Ehlinger was very, very good at what he was asked to do.
The Tom Herman Connection
Where this all comes together is new Bears offensive assistant and former Texas Longhorns head coach Tom Herman. Herman and Ehlinger spent the entirety of their tenures at Texas together, reaching multiple bowl games. While there were the occasional reports of tension between the two, both Ehlinger and Herman always kept matters in-house. It's to be expected after spending four seasons together that there would be both admiration and the occasional tension between the two. However, Herman had nothing but praise for his young signal-caller when their Texas careers came to an end.
Now, is this enough evidence that the Bears could target Sam Ehlinger in the upcoming NFL Draft? It's hard to say for sure. What we do know, however, is that Tom Herman will have plenty of say in who the team does decide to bring in.