Bears players marvel over the late Gale Sayers' skill, legacy

The Bears view Sayers as a player who could've been dominant in today's game.

(670 The Score) Upon learning the news Wednesday morning that Hall of Fame running back Gale Sayers had died, Bears receiver Allen Robinson went to YouTube and watched greatness.

Robinson recognized a player who dominated for the Bears over seven NFL seasons from 1965-'71 -- and could do the same today.

"He was a heck of a player," Robinson said. "Just seeing how he ran the ball, his style of play was very (fitting) to today’s game."

Bears veteran Cordarrelle Patterson, a former receiver who converted to running back this season, also saw a player in Sayers who could transcend generations.

"(Shoot), hell yeah," Patterson said. "Yeah, he can play. Let’s look what he did. He said something about all he needed is 18 inches or something, I was like, that’s crazy. That means you can’t tackle him, you get in the way, he’s going to make you miss. That’s all I see.

"I feel like in this day and age, he could’ve played in this league."

Sayers had been battling dementia before his death at the age of 77. In June 2019, he joined the Bears for their centennial celebration in Rosemont. Though Sayers was deep in dementia by that point, players like Robinson cherished the opportunity to meet him.

Bears running back David Montgomery has researched the life and career of Sayers and come away amazed with what has has found.

"Gale Sayers is probably the most fluid runner I've ever seen of all the backs in my life," Montgomery said. "I've never seen somebody be able to change directions as fast as he could change directions and make it look as smooth as he does. But since being here, I've learned a lot about Gale Sayers and Walter Payton.

"Understanding how hard those guys worked grabbed my attention, because I'm a big guy on hard work."

Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670.