Tablet Sports

Cowboys spotlight on Bears RB Matt Forte

Height: 6-2  Weight: 218

Season: 7th  College: Tulane

Strengths: Forte is among the most complete running backs in the NFL. He is a solid blocker, runner and receiver. Forte leads the Bears in rushing, with 201 carries for 828 yards and five touchdowns and in receiving with 78 catches for 650 yards and three touchdowns. He rarely leaves the field, with his backup, Ka’Deem Carey, the only other running back with any carries. Carey has 35 attempts this season. Forte is a tough runner who is difficult to bring down. He will run through arm tackles. He is as good as a receiver, and the Bears will move him outside at times. His hands are exceptional. As a blocker, he is outstanding at the cut block. He has averaged 73 yards rushing per game over his career.

Weaknesses: Forte has few weaknesses. He does not have elite speed. Forte has only one run over 20 yards this season, a 32-yarder. He ran a 4.46 for scouts coming out of Tulane. But his strength, especially in his lower body, and his balance allow him to overcome his lack of explosiveness. He has 17 career fumbles, losing 12, including one fumble and one lost fumble this season.

Last week: He had five carries for 6 yards and six catches for 52 yards in a 34-17 loss to Detroit.

Who has to stop him? The Cowboys rank 22nd against the run. They gave up a season-high 256 rushing yards against the Philadelphia Eagles last week. It is the most rushing yards they have allowed since a Dec. 30, 2012, loss to the Redskins when Washington gained 274 yards on the ground in a win-or-go-home game. Defensive tackle Josh Brent could make his season debut this week to give the Cowboys some bulk in the middle of the line.

Notable: Among NFL running backs, Forte ranks sixth in rushing attempts (201), eighth in rushing yards (828), first in receptions (78), first in receiving yards (650), third in yards from scrimmage (1,478) and tied for fifth in total touchdowns (8). … Forte has only three games with 20 or more carries this season. He has only three games of 100 or more rushing yards. … He ranks second in team history in yards from scrimmage (11,063) and rushing yards (7,494), fourth in rushing touchdowns (40) and fifth in overall touchdowns (55). … He is a two-time Pro Bowler, making the all-star team in 2011 and 2013.