Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of questions from fans on ChicagoBears.com.
Where do the Bears pick throughout the draft?
The Bears currently have seven picks in the April 26-28 NFL Draft; their own selections in Rounds 1 (No. 8 overall), 2 (No. 39), 4 (No. 105), 5 (No. 145), 6 (No. 181) and 7 (No. 224) and an additional fourth-rounder (No. 115) they acquired from the Arizona Cardinals last year when they traded down in the second round of the draft. The Bears dealt their 2018 third-round choice to the San Francisco 49ers last year to move up one spot to select quarterback Mitchell Trubisky with the second overall pick.
*With the release of Willie Young, Quintin Demps and Pernell McPhee, do you think that the Bears are going to go heavy on defense during the draft and free agency? *
The Bears are clearly getting younger on defense this offseason, but I don’t think they will make addressing the defense a greater priority than the offense in either free agency or the draft. General manager Ryan Pace has acknowledged that wide receiver and pass rusher are two need positions, so I expect those spots to be bolstered this offseason. Aside from that, I’m sure the Bears will add multiple players on both sides of the ball. In terms of the defense, to me the No. 1 priority is the continued development of young players who are already on the roster such as linemen Eddie Goldman and Jonathan Bullard; outside linebacker Leonard Floyd; inside linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski; and safeties Eddie Jackson and Adrian Amos.
Now that Matt Forte has announced his retirement, where would you rank him among the all-time Bears running backs?
I obviously never saw Red Grange, Bronko Nagurski or their contemporaries play (regardless of what some of my younger coworkers may try to tell you), so I’ll stick with the Super Bowl era, which began in the mid-1960s. I would say that Matt Forte is the third best Bears running back I’ve ever seen, behind Pro Football Hall of Famers Walter Payton and Gale Sayers. Sayers was spectacular, especially in the open field, but Payton remains the best football player I’ve ever seen. And Sweetness could do it all: rushing, receiving, passing, returning and blocking.