Tarik Cohen’s value to the Chicago Bears increases with each week.
On Sunday, Cohen became the first non-quarterback with a tying or go-ahead touchdown pass on the final play of regulation in the Super Bowl era, according to Elias research, when he found Anthony Miller for a 1-yard touchdown with just 3 seconds left on the clock to force overtime with the New York Giants.
The best part: Miller wasn’t even Cohen’s first read on the play.
“When we got down to the 1-yard line, I felt that [coach] Matt Nagy was going to call that play, and he did,” Bears quarterback Chase Daniel said. “The Giants ran Landon Collins around the edge when the jet sweep went, and it was a fake jet sweep, but Collins sort of got me.
“Tarik made one heck of a throw. We practice it every week in practice. He’s really never ever thrown to Miller on that play. He’s always thrown to me because in the walk-through, I’m wide open. Literally the first time he threw to Anthony was Friday in practice. It’s amazing how that happens.”
Cohen said he remained calm when Daniel wasn’t open.
“I knew I had to just stay on the run and not take a sack,” Cohen said. “I was just trying to be a quarterback and go through the reads.
“That’s a play that we’ve had for a long time. I think we put it in the playbook in camp or the beginning of the season. It worked out.”
Last season, Cohen became the first NFL rookie to record a rushing, receiving, passing and punt-return touchdown since Gayle Sayers in 1965.
The 5-foot-6 all-purpose threat makes a habit out of squeezing out extra yards on plays that look over. Cohen’s blazing speed makes him dangerous in the open field, but also difficult to push out of bounds along the edges.
Cohen caught a game-high 12 passes for 156 yards and rushed for 30 yards in the 30-27 loss to the Giants. He also returned two punts for 15 yards.
“We just had a good scheme drawn up against their defense,” Cohen said. “Coach Nagy and Coach [Mark] Helfrich were calling the plays up for me, ones that were designed to go to me. Chase was making a lot of scrimmage calls just to get me open, so whenever he did that, it was my job to step up and make those catches.”