The Bears had an extremely interesting draft this year, but interesting is not always good. Lets delve right into it.
Round One, 2nd Overall: Mitch Trubisky, QB – North Carolina
The Bears needed a QB of the future, and Ryan Pace went out and got one in Mitchell Trubisky. While he doesn’t have the hype around him that other quarterbacks picked this high have had in the past, he is an extremely solid prospect who has the potential to be a very good player in the National Football League. Trading up had to be done in order to get him, so I am OK with what we gave up. Overall, this pick took a lot of guts to make, and in retrospect I believe it was the right thing to do for this football team. Mike Glennon is the perfect guy to bridge the gap between Cutler and Tribusky. Grade: A
Round Two, 45th Overall: Adam Shaheen, TE – Ashland College (D-II)
This is where my confidence in Ryan Pace began to waiver. The Bears traded back from a high pick in the second round to recoup some of the picks they gave up to get Tribusky, which I understand to an extent. However, there were high level defensive players available at positions of need, particularly safety and corner back, but instead Pace decided in the midst of a TE run, to draft an athletic freak out of D-II school Ashland in Shaheen. His measurables are off the charts and his production was unbelievable, but it was against sub par competition. The Bears spent good money on a tight end this offseason in Dion Sims, and with Zach Miller already on the roster, TE is not a position of need. Simply put, after going offense in round one, the Bears needed to start adding young defensive players to the team, and Pace chose to go in a different direction. While I like the player and see a lot of potential in him, I do not like the pick. Grade: D+
Round Four, 112th Overall: Eddie Jackson, S – Alabama
Finally, the Bears added to the defense in round four. Eddie Jackson is an extremely versatile addition to the Bears’ secondary, having played both safety and corner with success in college. The major knock on him is his being prone to injury, having dealt with several of them throughout college. So, the evaluation of this pick truly depends on whether or not Jackson is able to stay healthy in the pros. The Bears got good value at this point in the draft, and Jackson has the opportunity to be a really good football player if he can stay on the field. And that happens to be a big if. Grade: B
Round Four, 119th Overall: Tarik Cohen, RB – North Carolina A&T (D-II)
The Bears decided to go offense again when in my opinion they needed to go defense. There was secondary talent still available at the draft, including controversial corner Desmond King out of Iowa, but Ryan Pace decided to go offense again in halfback Tarik Cohen, drafting yet another D-II prospect. Cohen is another athletic freak, nicknamed the “human joystick”, and he will provide a solid change of pace back to go behind Jordan Howard. I believe Cohen is more talented than the other backs on our roster, but now the Bears possess a crowded backfield. Again, I believe the Bears would have been best served drafting defense here, but Cohen could end up being a Darren Sproles type player for the Bears. Grade: D+
Round Five, 147th Overall: Jordan Morgan, OL – Kutztown University (D-II)
At this point in the draft, after going offense three out of the first four picks, offensive line is the last place I thought Ryan Pace would go. I was wrong, and Pace selected another athletic freak out of D-II: Jordan Morgan out of Kutztown University. Morgan has all the physical attributes scouts look for in a linemen, but his blocking skills still need some polishing. He dominated competition in college, but this competition was leaps and bounds away from what he will be dealing with in the NFL. In my opinion, the Bears should’ve taken a flyer on a high upside defensive player at this point in the draft, but they instead added to a position that wasn’t really of need. Grade: F
Overall Grade: D+
I think the Bears added a lot of athleticism and versatility to their team, yet this versatility would have been best served on the defensive side of the ball. Ryan Pace decided to go offense heavy in this draft in a year where the Bears truly needed to add young pieces to our defense. Trubisky is the Bears quarterback of the future whether the fans like it or not. I like that Pace was aggressive in getting his guy, but after that he really needed to add to the D, and he didn’t. Now the Bears need to find other ways to upgrade a less than stellar secondary, and there is no clear path to doing so at this juncture in the offseason.