This is CHGO’s Chicago Bears 2022 player preview series. Learn more about each player and what to expect from them this year.
Rookie cornerback Kyler Gordon is looking to make an immediate impact in Chicago after the Bears drafted him in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft — the team’s first draft pick this year.
2021 Stats (College)
Advanced Stat to Know: Gordon’s 3-cone drill time (6.67) was in the 94th percentile at his position. (PFF)
Best Game of 2021 (College)
Gordon’s best game came in late September when his Huskies faced the California Golden Bears. The corner finished with a career-high nine solo tackles. He also had two interceptions in the game — his only two of the season.
Will Kyler Gordon make an immediate impact or will patience be needed?
Gordon will be a Day 1 starter for the Bears. There’s no question about it. But just what exactly should we expect from the corner in his rookie season?
There’s plenty of reason to have optimism for Gordon. He’s a superior athlete with a tremendous burst that allows him to make plays at the catch point. Gordon possesses good body control (just rewatch the above clip) and fluidity to stick with receivers throughout their routes.
Gordon will also provide the secondary with a physical presence as he’s not afraid to make a play by unleashing a big hit. He’s also a tough matchup for receivers in press coverage.
Playing alongside veteran Jaylon Johnson will only help the rookie as he doesn’t have to step in as the Bears’ top cornerback.
In order for Gordon to succeed, he needs to prove he’s worked on his decision-making as there were times that he failed to react quick enough to make a routine play. He will also need to work on his eyes and read routes better.
These are all things that should improve with proper coaching and experience.
Cornerback is a tough position to thrive in as a rookie. Out of the nine rookie corners that played in at least 445 coverage snaps last season, only three allowed passer ratings under 94. All but two had multiple penalties in coverage, and the group allowed 28 combined touchdowns.
Young corners tend to get picked on. Expect quarterbacks to test Gordon all season, until he gives them reasons not to by making plays on the ball.
Gordon possesses plenty of potential to get excited about. Like most rookies at the position, expect him to have his fair share of growing pains. However, it’s also reasonable to expect Gordon to make some good things happen along the way.
It will be a mixed bag, but hopefully, there will be more good plays than head-scratching moments.
Gordon was the Bears’ first choice in the draft for a reason. The athletic cornerback will see a lot of action as a rookie.
Enjoy the highs and be patient with the lows as they are only teachable moments for a promising young player to learn from. He will learn more from his mistakes than his successes.
Prediction: Starts as the team’s CB2.
Stats: 45 Tackles, 5 PBUs, 2 INTs, 70 REC%.