We knew at the beginning of March that wide receiver Taylor Gabriel would not be returning to the Atlanta Falcons. He confirmed it himself on Twitter. While we anticipated that Gabriel would not return, as we are not clairvoyants (though we like to play them on the #internet), we did not know where he would land.
Well, now we know. Turbo is heading to Chicago.
Taylor Gabriel expected to sign with the Chicago Bears on a 4 year deal. per source.— Andrew Hawkins (@Hawk) March 13, 2018
Taylor Gabriel is my source. #ThomaHawk
The details of the contract have yet to be released, other than it’s a four-year deal—and much deserved, for a player who went from Cleveland cast-off to a focal point in Atlanta’s 2016 offense under Kyle Shanahan.
Taylor Gabriel seemingly did it all for the Falcons in their run up to the Super Bowl. Released just prior to the start of the 2016 season and snapped up off the scrap heap, Gabriel finished his inaugural Atlanta campaign with 579 yards receiving and six touchdowns. He became an X-factor of sorts in the Falcons offense, torching secondaries on vertical routes or using his blistering speed to cross up defenders on quick screens. He made Arizona look foolish that year.
Unfortunately, Gabriel wasn’t as congruent in Steve Sarkisian’s gameplan as he was in Shanahan’s. His 2017 saw a drop in production and lackluster numbers overall, as he secured 33 targets for only 378 yards and a touchdown. The seeming misuse of Gabriel by Sarkisian had many wondering if he was off to San Francisco to rejoin his former offensive coordinator, but to The Windy City it is for Turbo.
His football career defined by humble beginnings and fits and starts, Gabriel now finds himself with a four-year deal. It will be difficult not to root for him going forward. We wish him the best of luck in Chicago.