What to make of the Chicago Bears’ potential draft choices is currently a mystery. Depending on whom you ask, the Bears can go either way with their decision – especially with their first pick, which will be number 11 in the upcoming NFL draft. Thanks to their productivity during the offseason, the Bears can truly do what they want to do.
As for the biggest needs in the NFL draft, the Chicago Bears must find a few players in the secondary and on the defensive line. Preferably a legitimate pass rusher in the front seven is something that is high on the Bears’ list.
Will the Bears find a player similar to Super Bowl 50 most valuable player Von Miller?
It is possible, though very unlikely. Chicago Bears’ head coach John Fox has a keen eye for talented defensive players, having coached the troubled yet productive Greg Hardy and the aforementioned Miller. Fox would be fortunate to find another star player who yearns to sack opposing quarterbacks.
The type of player whom John Fox and the Bears want are defensive playmakers. It has long been Fox’s philosophy to build teams through the defense. As long as the defense is strong, and there is steady play from the quarterback, he believes that his teams have a good chance of winning football games. It was mentioned just days ago how the Chicago Bears might be thinking offense with their first draft pick. If that does indeed hold true, it will be a slight shift in what the Bears originally sought to do. Although, that would be a clear indicator on how the first 10 dominoes in the draft have fallen.
One thing is for certain about this upcoming Bears’ draft – they have some obvious needs.
An astute mind would quickly suggest that the Bears’ most glaring need is a pass rusher. Some will say that the secondary is the most incomplete position.
There is even a contingent of people who think the holes that need filling is at outside linebacker, when truthfully, that is the Bears’ strongest spot. Looking at where the Bears make their selection, if say in the unlikeliest of events that Ohio State’s Joey Bosa were to slide to the 11th spot, the Bears will leap to grab him. The Bears are hoping that Oregon Ducks’ edge rusher DeForest Buckner is available.
Pure edge rushers who can fit in the 3-4 defense are difficult to find. Chances are that Bosa will not be there when the Bears pick. Bosa will be long gone. That does not mean that the Bears cannot find a diamond in the rough in the later rounds. The Bears have nine picks to find a few difference-makers. There is one position that they are guaranteed to draft.
Tight end is a position of need for the Chicago Bears.
After trading away Martellus Bennett to the New England Patriots a few weeks ago, the Bears are down a player with sure hands and a knack for getting into the end zone. Bennett was perceived as someone who could not embrace what Coach Fox prefers for his players to do, which is concentrate solely on football. That, along with missing the initial Bears’ OTAs last year, Bennett did little to endear himself to a brand new coaching staff. Trading him away has hurt the team as far as the overall talent goes. The Bears have failed at trying to replace him.
GM Ryan Pace confirmed #Bears are still looking to add at TE. Didn't seem to enthused about the TE draft class this year: "It's OK."— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) March 22, 2016
The Bears’ three-year tender offer to New Orleans Saints TE Josh Hill, worth $7.5 million, was eventually matched (courtesy of the NFL website).
There were also a few overtures made to former Los Angeles Rams’ TE Jared Cook, who chose to sign (via Packers News) with the Green Bay Packers instead. Now the Bears are at a considerable loss, unless they find a tight end in the draft.
Tight ends in this upcoming draft leave little to be desired. Arkansas’ Hunter Henry is the highest-rated player at the position according to CBS Sports. Henry is the 52nd ranked player in the draft overall. He could go somewhere in the middle of the second round or the late third round, depending on if there is a run at couple of positions. Beyond Henry, there is Stanford’s Austin Hooper or Ohio State’s Nick Vannett. Expect the Bears to address the tight end position in the third or fourth round. And while Bears’ general manager Ryan Pace does not seem too happy with the crop of tight ends, he understands the position the Bears are in.
NFL scout on former Arkansas TE Hunter Henry: ‘He’s the most complete tight end to come out in years’ https://t.co/fT3zZ4nAwa— Michael Carvell (@Carvell_AJC) March 29, 2016
One must assume that a defensive player will be chosen with one of the Bears’ first two picks. If the first two picks are on defense, a pass rusher and secondary help will be added, though not necessarily in that order.
Continuing to look at the Chicago Bears’ draft, a rotational offensive lineman, additional help in the secondary and second pass rusher will be added. It is possible that the Bears choose a young outside linebacker and wide receiver with the potential to contribute in the next couple years in the middle rounds as well.
Another position to keep an eye on, especially in the later rounds, is kicker.
After Robbie Gould experienced his worst season with the Bears statistically, it is likely that he is on the decline. Gould also makes a decent salary at $3 million.
If the Bears were to get cut, he would have a cap hit of $4.1 million this season and the next, with $1.2 million counting as dead money. Since he has taken over the Bears’ kicking duties, Gould has never been pushed. Now might be the time to light a fire under him, or move on.
The upcoming draft for the Chicago Bears is a mystery as far as the first round pick goes. The rest of their draft will be determined from what they do first. They have plenty of needs, though not many outstanding ones as we believe. With a successful offseason in the books, the Bears are in a good position.
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