Jimbo Covert Chicago Bears
“I don’t think I’m proven. You are only as good as your last game. I try to think of myself as steady, but there is always room for improvement. If you can’t see room for improvement, it’s time to get out.”
Jimbo Covert, a 6’4”, 277-pound tackle out of Pittsburgh, was drafted in the first round (6th player overall) of the 1983 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears. He earned the Bears’ starting left tackle position starting all 16 games during his rookie season. Covert’s presence made an immediate impact as he helped clear the path for Hall of Fame running back Walter Payton to gain 1,421 rushing yards and the Bears to lead the entire NFL in rushing. Covert’s efforts earned him All-Rookie honors.
Covert would continue to anchor an offensive line that helped the Bears capture six division titles in seven-year span. As a Bears team Captain, Chicago won 10 or more games in a season six times during his eight-year career. The Bears’ success during Covert’s tenure was largely predicated on a strong rushing attack. They led the National Football League in rushing four straight seasons from 1983 to 1986 and were the NFC’s top rushing team in 1989.
He was able to battle through numerous injuries to start 110 games. Covert started at left tackle in 11 playoff games, three NFC championship games and one Super Bowl. He helped Chicago lead the NFC in points scored during the Bears’ magical 1985 season, which was highlighted by a 15-1 regular-season record. That season culminated in a dominating 46-10 victory over New England Patriots in Super Bowl XX.
Covert paved the way for a 1,000-yard rusher in every season of his career but one. He was voted to the Pro Bowl twice (1985 and 1986), was named the NFL’s Offensive Lineman of the Year in 1985 and the Miller Lite Offensive Lineman of the Year in 1986. He earned consensus First-Team All-Pro honors in 1985 and in 1986 as well as Second-Team All-Pro honors in 1987. Covert was also an All NFC selection four times (1985, 1986, 1987 and 1990) and named to NFL’s All-Decade Team of 1980s.