Running back Matt Forte attributes his career-lows of 44 receptions and 340 receiving yards to former coordinator Mike Tice's overreliance on Brandon Marshall in the Chicago Bears' one-dimensional offense last season.
That won't happen again under new coach Marc Trestman this year.
"I would expect (to be used more)," Forte said, via Comcast SportsNet Chicago. "Coach Trestman, I think he said he watched a lot of film on me and has seen me run different routes. So we'll get back to catching the ball out of the backfield like we did the prior years."
Darren Sproles and Ray Rice are the only two NFL running backs with more receiving yards than Matt Forte over the past five seasons. It's clear that Trestman plans to take advantage of a back who averaged 56 receptions for 496 receiving yards while catching eight touchdown passes in the pre-Tice years.
Trestman has raved about Forte's playmaking ability after pouring over game tape.
"I just got done looking at all his catches from 2010. He was on the line scrimmage, he was running out of the backfield (and) he is great in space," Trestman explained in March. "He has a skill set that goes full spectrum of what you want out of a running back. He can run inside. He can run outside. He can catch the ball extremely well. I saw him as a very good route runner for a wide receiver. I saw him in slants in 2010. I saw him run rail routes, sideline routes."
Trestman has earned a well-deserved reputation as a quarterback whisperer, but it's Forte who stands to benefit the most in the Bears' offense. In Trestman's 10 NFL seasons as offensive coordinator or quarterbacks coach, his lead back averaged 65 receptions per year.
We're officially issuing the fantasy alert for Forte in 2013.
Follow Chris Wesseling on Twitter @ChrisWesseling.