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Bears Draft Primer

Final mocks: Who analysts think Bears will draft


Cue Europe's "The Final Countdown" or Men at Work's "Who Can It Be Now?"

The NFL Draft kicks off Thursday night and here are who league analysts are predicting the Bears will select with their two second-round selections Friday night:

Brad Biggs, Chicago Tribune (April 27)
No. 39: Houston defensive lineman Logan Hall
Comment: The Bears sent defensive coordinator Alan Williams to Houston's pro day and hosted Hall of a top-30 visit to Halas Hall. [General manager Ryan] Poles tried to make his biggest investment in free agency on a defensive tackle, and Hall has the versatility to be used similarly to how coach Matt Eberflus deployed DeForest Buckner in Indianapolis.

No. 48: Central Michigan tackle Bernhard Raimann
Comment: The only real addition Poles has made on the offensive line to this point is center Lucas Patrick. Raimann has limited experience at left tackle but possesses the length and strength to play there. If the Bears add Raimann, they could consider moving Larry Borom inside to right guard.

C.J. Doon, Baltimore Sun (April 20)
No. 39: Georgia receiver George Pickens
No. 48: Texas A&M guard/tackle Kenyon Green

Luke Easterling, USA Today (April 27)
No. 39: North Dakota State receiver Christian Watson
No. 48: Auburn cornerback Roger McCreary

Josh Edwards, CBS Sports (April 22)
No. 39: North Dakota State receiver Christian Watson
No. 48: Kentucky guard Darian Kinnard

Kevin Fishbain, The Athletic (April 28)
No. 39: Trade down with Falcons for picks No. 43 and No. 114 (in fourth round)

No. 43: Auburn cornerback Roger McCreary
Comment: Seeing Kindle Vildor, Duke Shelley, Thomas Graham Jr. and Tavon Young as the top four corners at last week's voluntary veteran minicamp, as Jaylon Johnson was absent, was a stark reminder of the need in the secondary for a long-term answer at a premium position. [Dane] Brugler writes that McCreary is a "quick-twitch athlete" who can mirror receivers off the snap. He's played man and zone and was quite productive, with 38 passes defensed and six picks in the past three seasons. "He plays with a chip on his shoulder and looks to mix things up," per Brugler, another trait that could be attractive to Poles and coach Matt Eberflus.

No. 48: Tulsa tackle Tyler Smith
Comment: Is there a scenario in which Poles had a high grade last year on Larry Borom? Is it possible that Poles feels fortunate to have Borom as a left tackle? Sure, I guess, but I continue to find it hard to believe that the Bears are going to enter Week 1 with Borom protecting Justin Fields' blind side. Similarly, I can't see the Bears not making an aggressive move for the right guard spot, and Smith could potentially kick inside. Smith just turned 21. His top athletic comparisons, per Mock Draftable, are Kyle Long and projected top-10 picks Ikem Ekwonu and Charles Cross. Since he's "raw," the Bears can be patient, but considering the state of the offensive line, the importance of the position, and the GM's expertise there, I keep coming back to an O-lineman being selected in Round 2.

Pete Fiutek, College Football News (April 28)
No. 39: Florida cornerback Kaiir Elam
Comment: The Bears really need wide receivers, but the value isn't quite there for that. They also need help on the offensive line, but a strong corner is a must at some point. Elam is a first round possibility who'll drop.

No. 48: Memphis guard Dylan Parham
Comment: The Bears could use a star tackle to add to the mix, but they just need five great blockers up front. The versatility of Parham matters.

Shane Hallam, Draft Countdown (April 28)
No. 39: Ohio State tackle Nicholas Petit-FrereNo. 48: Michigan edge rusher David Ojabo

Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News (April 25)
No. 39: Auburn cornerback Roger McCreary
Comment: The Bears were terrible at cornerback away from young rising star Jaylon Johnson and need to add a solid coverage option for new defensive-minded head coach Matt Eberflus. McCreary offers good size, physicality and fluidity.

No. 48: Alabama receiver John Metchie III
Comment: The Bears need a field-stretcher opposite new No. 1 Darnell Mooney with Allen Robinson gone. Metchie would fit the bill as the ideal speedy No. 2 for Justin Fields playing off Mooney and tight end Cole Kmet.

Adam Jahns, The Athletic (April 28)

No. 39: Trade down with Falcons for picks No. 43 and No. 114 (in fourth round)

No. 43: Baylor safety Jalen Pitre
Comment: For some prospects, teams must think beyond position. That's Pitre, who projects as a safety but played in the box and in the slot mainly in college. In Baylor's defense, he handled the versatile "star" role and became one by making plays in nearly every game. For Eberflus and defensive coordinator Alan Williams, Pitre could be an option at slot cornerback, a key position in the Bears defense. If the Bears don't trade back, he could be an option at No. 39. He's that good. Brugler has him as his 38th-best player. Pitre seemingly fits the mold that Eberflus and Poles have for their defenders, especially when they talk about intensity, physicality and takeaways.

No. 48: Houston defensive lineman Logan HallComment: Eberflus has stressed the importance of the three-technique tackle in his defense. Signing Justin Jones might not be enough for him. But the position also should be viewed differently than those who played it for former Bears coach Lovie Smith. Eberflus wants more. "I'm not making a player comp here, but in Matt Eberflus' defense, can (Hall) be deployed like DeForest Buckner was in Indianapolis?" ESPN analyst Matt Bowen said recently on the "Hoge & Jahns" podcast. "What I mean by that is that is someone who can play three-techinque, which is the outside edge of the guard, a one-technique, which is basically a nose tackle, and also play at end where you can scheme him."

Mike Kaye, Pro Football Network (April 20)
No. 39: Tulsa tackle Tyler Smith
Comment: If the Bears are going to give Justin Fields a fair shot, they need to protect him properly. Smith can compete for a starting job on the outside.

No. 48: North Dakota State receiver Christian Watson
Comment: The Bears need help at wideout, and Watson has a very high ceiling. He could be a No. 1 receiver for Fields by the end of his rookie season.

Mel Kiper Jr., ESPN (April 13)
No. 39: Washington cornerback Kyler Gordon
Comment: The Bears could go several ways here, including offensive tackle, wide receiver and guard. With Gordon still available, though, I'd pounce. He has lockdown traits and didn't allow a single touchdown in coverage last season. There has been a great history of teams finding starting corners in the second round, and Gordon has a great chance to play early.

No. 48: Tulsa tackle Tyler Smith
Comment: I mentioned Chicago's offensive line need at No. 39, and Smith could play a role at guard or tackle. He played left tackle for the Golden Hurricane, but some teams view him as a better guard at the next level. He has to be more consistent and work on his technique -- he was called for a whopping 12 penalties last season -- but the tools are there.

Todd McShay, ESPN (April 5)
No. 39: Tulsa tackle Tyler Smith
Comment: Protecting Fields should be high on the priority list, and Smith is the top tackle still on the board. He has franchise-tackle upside but will require time to get there.

No. 48: Trade down with Falcons
Comment: The Bears have only six 2022 picks and lack a first-rounder. So if Atlanta calls and offers a third-rounder (No. 82) to move up from No. 58 to No. 48, new GM Ryan Poles will be intrigued. Chicago needs a receiver, but the Day 2 pool of pass-catchers is deep. And the Falcons, with nine picks this year, have some room to operate if they want to move up to get someone. That's especially true if that someone is a quarterback.

No. 58: South Alabama receiver Jalen Tolbert
Comment: This is a little bit of a reach, but the Bears can't leave Round 2 without a receiver, and Tolbert is smooth with the speed to make vertical plays and produce after the catch. His NFL route tree will take some time to develop, but he would be a high-upside pick. Remember, Allen Robinson II signed with the Rams, leaving Darnell Mooney atop the Bears' depth chart.

Cam Mellor, Pro Football Network (April 28)
No. 39: Trade up with Giants for No. 36 pick and 2023 fourth-round selection in exchange for No. 39 pick and a 2023 seventh-round choice.

No. 36: Arkansas receiver Treylon Burks
Comment: The Chicago Bears move up three spots in the second round to ensure they secure Treylon Burks from Arkansas. Despite lackluster numbers at the Combine and Arkansas Pro Day, Burks has a distinguished football speed that allows him to gain ground on defenders once the ball is in his hands.

No 48: South Carolina edge rusher Kingsley Enagbare
Comment: The stacked EDGE class allows Kingsley Enagbare to slide to the Bears here. Enagbare can move off the edge with grace and power, a rare blend for a guy his size. Yet, he can also rush the passer from the interior or drop back in space to take away shallow passing zones.

Thor Nystrom, NBC Sports (April 27)
No. 39: Central Michigan tackle Bernard Raimann
No. 48: Georgia receiver George Pickens

Zack Patraw, Sports Illustrated (April 25)
No. 39: Penn State receiver Jahan Dotson
No. 48: Central Michigan tackle Bernhard Raimann

Tony Pauline, Pro Football Network (April 27)
No. 39: Central Michigan offensive lineman Luke Goedeke
No. 48: North Dakota State receiver Christian Watson

Chad Reuter, (April 22)
No. 39: Arkansas receiver Treylon Burks
No. 48: Penn State edge rusher Arnold Ebiketie

Nate Tice, The Athletic (April 21)
No. 39: Cincinnati receiver Alec Pierce
Comment: A big ball winner with a volleyball background, Pierce is still developing as a receiver. But he is long and athletic and pulls down 50/50 balls more often than not. He will instantly be a contributor in the red zone for Justin Fields. And he has room to develop into a starting outside receiver.

No 48: Alabama defensive tackle Phidarian Mathis
Comment: Lacking depth on the defensive line, the Bears go with Mathis to help hold ground up front. Mathis is older and took some time to develop at Alabama, but he has length and can push the pocket both in the run game and as a pass rusher.

Anthony Treash, Pro Football Focus (April 11)
No. 39: Georgia receiver George Pickens
Comment: Pickens was a true-freshman star back in 2019 before injuries derailed his college career. The Georgia receiver went from an 88.0 receiving grade in 2019 to a 71.9 mark in 2020 while dealing with a nagging upper-body injury. Matters got even worse before 2021, as he tore his ACL in the spring, limiting him to just 32 routes for the season. At his peak, Pickens looked like one of the most dominant receivers in the country. He showcased elite hands and routinely hauled in off-target throws with his massive catch radius. The 6-foot-3, 195-pound receiver dropped just two of 139 career targets at Georgia, so there's no denying his ball skills are exceptional. Along with his size, he has the physicality and acceleration teams want in an X receiver. The question is, can he stay healthy?

No. 48: Auburn cornerback Roger McCreary
Comment: McCreary's lack of length and underwhelming athletic testing numbers have sunk his draft stock. The Auburn corner checked in with 28 7/8-inch arms, which would be the shortest among all outside cornerbacks in the NFL right now. Whichever team takes him will likely try him in the slot — where he has played just 105 career snaps — as a result. But I think he deserves a shot on the outside where he dominated in the SEC. The good with McCreary is that he is an advanced corner prospect from a technique standpoint and has proven elite collegiate production. This past season, he was the highest-graded cornerback in the FBS and led the Power Five in pass breakups with 13. Since 2019, he is second to only Ahmad Gardner among FBS corners in coverage grade playing press. The physical traits are concerning, but McCreary has the experience, technique and mindset to succeed in the NFL. (April 28)
No. 39: Michigan edge rusher David Ojabo
Comment: If David Ojabo drops out of the first round, I think this is a perfect spot for him … the Bears need an edge rusher to replace Khalil Mack. Ojabo tore his Achilles this spring, but he's expected back in the second half of this upcoming regular season. Many expect him to fall to Round 2, and while that could happen, I could see a Montez Sweat situation playing out where Ojabo is chosen in the 24-32 range.

No. 48: Kentucky receiver Wan'Dale Robinson
Comment: The Bears lost Allen Robinson to the Rams, so they have nothing at receiver beyond Darnell Mooney. Wan'Dale Robinson has game-breaking speed.

Ryan Wilson, CBS Sports (April 27)
No. 39: North Dakota State receiver Christian Watson
No. 48: Kentucky guard Darian Kinnard



There's no offseason for the Bears, and this year we're celebrating an historic offseason with the whole family. We'll get together for THE MOMENT we welcome the newest Bears into the family. Join us at Soldier Field for the 2023 Miller Lite Chicago Bears Draft Party, and spend night 1 of the Draft with thousands of your closest friends.

We'll have non-stop Draft coverage and analysis, plus the spring's best party with activities across the Dr Pepper Patio, the Miller Lite Midway, the Verizon Mezzanine and on the field. Tickets for this year's Draft Party are currently sold out. Check back for updated information between now and April 27th. If further tickets become available, you'll hear about it here first.

With the Bears holding two second-round picks in the 2022 NFL Draft, senior writer Larry Mayer ranks the top 10 Round 2 draft choices in team history.

Larry Mayer

Bears Senior Writer

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