Chicago Bears: Who should fill in for injured Anthony Miller?

Chicago Bears (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images) /

With Anthony Miller unlikely to play Sunday, who should the Chicago Bears replace him with?

The Chicago Bears have largely avoided the injury bug this season, until this week. In their 16-14 win over the Arizona Cardinals, they not only lost Prince Amukamara to a hamstring injury but also lost Anthony Miller with a separated shoulder. This has to be a huge disappointment for Miller, who was starting to get it going a little in the offense.

Miller brought a dimension to the offense that will be difficult to replace. In fact, of the potential replacements, I don’t think there is a player who possesses a similar skillset or brings the same type of game to the field for the Bears.

However, as Matt Nagy said earlier in the week, the team has to have a “next man up” mentality. As a result, fans appear to have strong opinions on who should cover down for Miller while he is out against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. So who could that player be? We take a look at three options below.

Kevin White

There certainly isn’t a groundswell of support on social media for Kevin White. A quick review of Twitter shows not many are looking for White to take the majority of the minutes created by Miller’s absence — and with good reason. The former No. 7 overall pick has been a disappointment.

However, there was some hope based on offseason reports and being in a new offense, that he might have a bit of a breakout year. Well, that has not happened. In fact, he has hardly seen the field this year. Granted he doesn’t play special teams, but the fact that the former first-round pick can’t get on the field is very telling. Either he’s not grasping the offense, or he lacks the talent to execute. Either way, he shouldn’t get the nod on Sunday.

Josh Bellamy

Unfortunately, Josh Bellamy is the most likely candidate to replace Miller. I say unfortunately because he is not my personal choice. However, he is probably the safest choice. He has the most familiarity with Mitch Trubisky, being the only holdover (who actually played) from the wide receiving corps last year.

The one bugaboo with Bellamy — and it’s a biggy for a wide receiver — has been his penchant for dropping the football. Though in fairness, he has been ok so far this season in limited action. Bellamy also has the advantage of being a very effective special teams player.

In addition, Nagy hinted this week during a press conference, that he may dial it back a little and get Mitch back into situations he’s comfortable with. If that’s the case, he could look to plays/concepts that were successful last season. Perhaps having Bellamy on the field could provide Mitch with a little added comfort as he has the most familiarity with him.

Javon Wims

Anyone remember Wally Pipp? He used to play first base for the New York Yankees. Then one day he got injured and was replaced by a gentleman named Lou Gehrig. Pipp never got his job back. Now, I’m certainly not suggesting Javon Wims will take Miller’s job. But the point is that sometimes a blossoming player simply needs an opportunity to perform, and once he does, his performance makes it impossible to take him off the field.

Well, Miller’s injury could provide the same opportunity for Wims. In my opinion, Wims is the best option to fill in for Miller. Let’s face it, White has 13 games left in his Bears’ career, and Bellamy is a known quantity.

But Wims is an intriguing option. He performed very well in the preseason and showed off his ability to provide a deep threat. He has terrific hands and body control in traffic, so is someone Trubisky could simply throw the ball up to.

Next. Which Bears player is key to a win against the Bucs?. dark

Re-watching Wims’ preseason highlights have me singing “Let’s Get Vertical” to Olivia Newton John’s classic hit “Physical” and I’m grinning from ear to ear. Now, who knows if he’s able to replicate that in a game that matters, but don’t you want to find out?