The Chicago Bears traded up in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft for wide receiver Anthony Miller because they thought he was too talented to let slip away. But after two underwhelming seasons in the league, the time is now for Miller to become the player the Bears thought he'd be when GM Ryan Pace identified him as a must-have player.
"He's competitive," Pace said shortly after the 2018 draft. "He's tough. His route quickness, his hands, his work ethic, his mentality. All those things are infectious qualities that he possesses. He's a fun guy to watch on tape because of how he plays."
Miller's traits have produced just 85 catches, 1,079 yards and nine touchdowns in two injury-riddled seasons. With the Bears cutting ties with Taylor Gabriel and only veteran Tedd Ginn and rookie Darnell Mooney added to the depth chart this offseason, the time is now for Miller to justify Pace's high grade.
The former Memphis standout is using this offseason to familiarize himself with some of the league's greats, both past and present, to unlock his full potential. He's been studying film of Steve Smith, Isaac Bruce and Stefon Diggs, according to the Chicago Tribune.
"I feel like this is going to be my best year yet," Miller said. "I've matured a lot on the field and I've gained a lot of knowledge, especially this offseason. I've been studying up a lot on other players and seeing what they do so I can enhance my game."
Miller won't have to look very far to find another resource who can help him develop in his third year. Ginn's experience as a productive playmaker will be a positive influence in the wide receiver room.
"That's a guy who has been in the league like 14 years, and he's just a great guy to sponge off of as far as knowing things," Miller said via the Chicago Tribune. "I'm glad I've got an opportunity to play with him."
Here's who Bears WR Anthony Miller is studying to take his game to next level originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago