You don’t lose your job due to injury; you lose it if the player filling in for you turns out to be better in coaches’ eyes.
Armando Allen is in that spot. Allen was a solid special-teams player with seven tackles, and averaged 4.6 yards per carry and caught a couple of passes in spot duty last season.
But he strained a hamstring in the Carolina game and couldn’t play in the next two. Unfortunately for him, Michael Ford could, and did, pretty well.
Well enough that the Cleveland game has shaped up as the tipping-point game at the No. 3 spot.
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“You just want to have faith and continue to do what you can do to get better,” Allen said. “And that’s my case, just hope my number’s called and step up and make plays.”
In Matt Forte and Michael Bush the Bears have played in a combined 149 of the last 160 games. They are durable.
But Forte did miss a game last season and Bush three, and the nature of the NFL is that the Bears felt enough of a need for help that they signed Kahlil Bell for a couple of games early in the season and two more at the end when Bush went on injured reserve with a rib injury.
Notably perhaps, the performances running the football figure to be considerably less important than what each can do on special teams. They know it.
“Just keep getting returns and on other things, doing on kickoffs,” Ford said. “Whatever special teams it is I’m called, I have to make my mark on it. I’ve got to get my conditioning up and keep running and getting focused for that game. Because it’s going to be a lot of running.”