Chicago Bears: Trey Burton injury presents an opportunity

Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The injury to Chicago Bears tight end Trey Burton presents a golden opportunity.

Just before the Chicago Bears played in their Wild Card matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles at Soldier Field last year, they announced that starting tight end Trey Burton would miss the game with an injury.

As you likely know by now, Burton woke up with a stiff groin and was unable to power through and play in the game. The timing of the injury was curious to some, while others even went so far as to accuse Burton of embellishing an injury to avoid having to play his old team.

On Wednesday, it appears those silly narratives can finally be put to rest as, according to head coach Matt Nagy, Burton had surgery to repair a sports hernia “a couple of months ago,” and as a result, will miss OTAs.

While you never want a starter to miss time with an injury, Burton is well versed in the Nagy offense, going back to his days with Doug Pederson in Philadelphia, so missing this time isn’t as big of a deal.

In addition, the injury could actually present a golden opportunity for other members of the Bears’ tight end group. It will allow for Dax Raymond, who we profiled recently, as well as Ian Bunting, and Ellis Richardson, all of whom are rookies, to get some increased looks in practice. For players looking to carve out their spot in a depleted tight end core, this is exactly the kind of opportunity they need.

Also, this could present an opportunity for Adam Shaheen in OTAs. Though he is certainly going to make the roster, he hasn’t been able to stay on the field long enough to put things together in his first couple of seasons. Some increased attention and additional reps may be just what the doctor ordered. In fact, it seems he already had a nice afternoon on Wednesday.

Hopefully, Shaheen can parlay one good afternoon into a few good days and have a successful OTA. While the Bears’ offense is loaded with offensive weapons, Shaheen adds such a different dynamic than what they currently have, and would be an extraordinary weapon — especially in the red zone.

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If he’s not able to secure that role, then I’d look to Raymond to be the most likely to do so. While Ben Braunecker has the experience, he is not as athletic or dynamic as Raymond. Alternatively, I could be completely off and maybe one of the undrafted rookie free agents blows the coaching staff away. Who knows? Anything is possible.