TE Zach Miller - Chicago Bears
|6-4, 233||Born: 10-4-1984||College: Nebraska-Omaha||Drafted: Round 6|
Week 21: bye week
Recent Game Summaries
2016 Week 11 vs NYG (3 / 3 / 61 / 1 rec)
Zach Miller arguable played the best game of his 2016 season before leaving in the second quarter with a foot injury. Miller, who has missed years of NFL service time due to foot injuries, reportedly suffered a broken bone in his foot. This obviously is not a good sign for Miller, nor is it one for the Bears offense. Jay Cutler and Miller were as in sync as ever before the tight end went down. Cutler and Miller connected on a beautiful 19-yard touchdown pass and catch and another great throw that split the seam for 34 yards. What happens now at tight end is anyone's guess.
2016 Week 10 vs TB (7 / 4 / 32 / 0 rec)
Zach Miller entered Sunday with a great matchup against the lowly Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense. When the game ended Sunday, Miller only found himself with four catches on seven targets for 32 yards. Miller's inability to make an impactful impression on the game is a result of four turnovers and the quarterback's over-reliance on one receiver. The Bears' offense never found its rhythm because of said four turnovers. If this offense continues to struggle as it did Sunday, expect a low ceiling for Miller come Sunday.
2016 Week 8 vs MIN (10 / 7 / 88 / 0 rec)
Zach Miller played what perhaps was his best game of the season Monday night against the Minnesota Vikings. With his favorite quarterback in the start lineup after a five-week layoff, Miller caught seven passes on ten targets for 88 yards. Miller appears to be fully healthy for the first time all season, and his play Monday night reflected it very much. As long as Cutler continues to be the go-to-guy under center, expect Miller's production to remain steady, somewhere around 6-8 catches per game.
2016 Week 7 vs GB (5 / 2 / 40 / 0 rec)
Zach Miller finished Thursday's game with the most receiving yards on the team, a whopping 40 yards on two catches (5 targets). Miller barely saw the light of day in the middle of the field, thanks to a Green Bay defense that knew its opposition couldn't move the ball down field. After Brian Hoyer left the game with a broken arm, the Packers defense clamped down even more on Matt Barkley and his inability to hit a receiver in stride. Miller's productivity, as the case with any Bears pass-catcher, entirely relies on who's throwing him the ball. We all saw how tough it's been for the Bears to score points, despite being able to rack up massive amounts of yards. Until the Bears can utilize the deep ball, it's going to be tough for Miller to make consistent contributions when the opposition is clogging up Miller's domain. Miller needs Jay Cutler to return this week. That certainly will help his situation.
2016 Week 6 vs JAX (10 / 6 / 36 / 0 rec)
Zach Miller's role in the Chicago Bears' offense appears to be growing(?) with Brian Hoyer under center. In Sunday's 17-16 loss to the Jaguars, Miller received 10 targets, of which he caught six for 36 yards. Despite the lack of receiving yards against Jacksonville, Miller still is a favorite target of new-ish quarterback Brian Hoyer, who loves to target the middle of the field. Hoyer wants to target Miller more and more, you can see it in his progressions. The only thing that is standing in the way of more Miller is Hoyer's inability to stretch the field with Alshon Jeffery. The middle of the field consistently is clogged with pass-catchers like Miller, Eddie Royal and Cameron Meredith. With four big bodies taking up space, it will continue to be difficult for Miller to rack up YAC or to catch the ball while moving up field. It's a lot of catch and get hit for Miller, which isn't good for a guy who consistently has been plagued by injury during his career.
2016 Week 5 vs IND (8 / 7 / 73 / 0 rec)
Zach Miller has been an adequate tight end this season for the Chicago Bears. While his stats hardly jump off the sheet, he clearly has formed a solid connection with new quarterback Brian Hoyer. Miller caught seven passes on eight targets for 73 yards in Sunday's loss to the Colts. He finished the game third on the team in targets. With Hoyer under center, the Bears have (more often that not) successfully moved the football down the field by playing things conservatively. Miller gets the conservative tag given his close proximity to the line of scrimmage, giving Hoyer a safe dump-off option if nothing develops downfield. Miller has seen 21 targets in the last three games, all Hoyer starts.
2016 Week 4 vs DET (3 / 3 / 31 / 1 rec)
Zach Miller very much was an afterthought of Chicago's offense in Sunday's 17-14 win over the Detroit Lions. Miller only received three targets on the day, catching all three of those targets for 21 yards and one touchdown. It's somewhat surprising to see Miller finish the game with only three catches, seeing as 33 of 36 Hoyer attempts came within 20 yards of the line of scrimmage. Chicago's offense still is finding itself after suffering injuries on the offensive line and at quarterback. When the dust settles, Miller more than likely will be standing in the middle of the field waiting to catch the football.
2016 Week 3 vs DAL (9 / 8 / 78 / 2 rec)
We finally have a Zach Miller sighting! Miller, the journeyman tight end, hauled in eight of nine targets for 78 yards and two touchdowns. Miller did a great job of finding space to work in the middle of the field. Not only did Miller do a great job of finding space, he did an even better job of taking contact after the catch while trying to extend the play. Miller took contact after the catch on both of his touchdown passes and managed to fall and extend forward into the end zone. Now we know that Miller is a favorite target of new quarterback Brian Hoyer. If the status quo under center remains the same next week, Miller will be a good play. If Jay Cutler is back under center, you might want to give it a week to see what happens. During the first two games of the season, both of which Cutler started, Miller and his quarterback did not appear to be on the same page.
2016 Week 2 vs PHI (5 / 4 / 33 / 0 rec)
Zach Miller is becoming a forgotten piece of the Chicago Bears offense. Miller's role in the offense has been limited. With Kevin White and Eddie Royal already running routes based on the middle of the field, Miller now finds himself with much less room with which to work. Miller caught four passes on five targets for 33 yards against the Eagles. While that stat line might looks similar to other tight ends in the league, we all expected more this season from Miller -- more touchdowns, at least. Miller, White and Royal all live within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage, making it tough for any one of them to catch and pass and make a move. Until the Bears' offense opens up a bit and moves vertically, expect more of the same from Miller.
2016 Week 1 vs HOU (4 / 3 / 14 / 0 rec)
The jury is somewhat out on Zach Miller. The journeyman tight end entered the 2016 season with high expectations. Miller developed great rapport last season with Jay Cutler, something the Bears were hoping would continue into 2016. That rapport, however, was nowhere to be found in Sunday's loss to the Houston Texans. Miller found himself on the receiving end of five targets, hauling in three for 14 yards. Moving forward, one issue that could lead to a disappointing season for Miller is the offensive line's inability to protect its quarterback. The more the offensive line continues to struggle, the more Miller will be either off the field or lined up in blocking formation. Both would drastically affect his ability to produce the kinds of numbers we all were expecting before the season kicked off. It's definitely too early to write off a guy like Miller, who seemingly has bounced back every time adversity strikes him.
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