Dannehy: Chicago Bears Mock Draft, Volume I

| April 4th, 2023

The Chicago Bears really don’t have a lot of options when the NFL Draft opens later this month.

The team entered the offseason with as many asset-acquiring resources as any team we’ve ever seen. They filled some holes, but still are among the worst teams in the entire league when it comes to the offensive and defensive lines. Specifically, their offensive line, which features a gaping hole at offensive tackle and several question marks.

With that, I used the Pro Football Focus Mock Draft Simulator to help get a somewhat unpredictable look at the draft and I used five of the first six picks on linemen.

11. Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia

The Bears have put themselves in a position where they basically have to take an offensive tackle with their first pick. They can’t rely on getting a starter in the second round and going into the season with Larry Borom competing with Alex Leatherwood would be nothing short of malpractice. The good news is I was able to move back a couple of spots, exchanging the ninth, 64th and 103rd picks for the 11th, 41st and 72nd. All three of the consensus top offensive tackles were still available at 11 and I went with Jones because I like his fit with the Bears better.

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ATM: Mocking the 2020 Bears Draft

| April 22nd, 2020

Ryan Pace is in a difficult position as he enters the 2020 NFL draft.

Not because he’ll be making the picks in his pajamas, but because the team has several directions it could go and he can’t afford to get it wrong. This is make-or-break for Pace. He has built 90% of a Super Bowl roster, but has to overcome his biggest miss, the quarterback. After a disappointing 8-8 season in 2019, the Bears have plugged some holes, but simply need more actual difference makers.

With that in mind, the focus of the draft has to be finding impact players. While drafting for the future is a nice luxury, Pace can’t afford to worry about 2021 until it comes. He has to win in 2020 or the picks he makes for the future won’t matter.

With that thought, I put myself in Pace’s shoes. Having two top-50 picks gives the team ammunition to add two impact players. The problem, of course, is that they aren’t scheduled to pick again until the fifth round. They have serious needs at cornerback, wide receiver, right guard and safety. (One could add quarterback to that too, but the Bears seem intent on riding with the winner of the competition between Nick Foles and Mitch Trubisky.)

Ideally, the Bears would get two sure starters — or favorites to start — and a third player who is at least in competition for a starting job. In the later rounds, they can look for depth and fill holes at offensive tackle, tight end, defensive line and elsewhere.

In order to more accurately file a mock draft for the Bears, I used the help of the mock draft simulator from Pro Football Focus. I went into the second round targeting a pool of players with the hopes that I could move back and come away with three of them.

That group included:

WR: Brandon Aiyuk, Denzel Mims, Jalen Reagor and KJ Hamler

OL: Josh Jones, Isaiah Wilson, Robert Hunt and Lloyd Cushenberry

CB: Trevon Diggs, Jaylon Johnson, A.J. Terrell and Reggie Robinson

S: Jeremy Chinn, Kyle Dugger, Grant Delpit or Antoine Winfield.

Here is how it played out:

Pick 43: Trade with Tampa Bay

Bears receive Picks 45 and 117

Bucs receive: Picks 43 and 196

Note: By moving back, however, the Bears missed top remaining cornerback prospect Jaylon Johnson, Utah. 

Pick 45: K.J. Hamler, WR, Penn State

Hamler was one of the few remaining players out of my initial pool that was still available. With sub-4.3 speed, he’ll immediately move into the role previously played by Taylor Gabriel. Hands are the question with Hamler, which have some comparing him to Tedd Ginn Jr., not Tyreek Hill like the Bears would hope. But, his speed is so rare, the big plays will make up for the drops.

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Across The Middle: 2018 NFL Mock Draft

| April 25th, 2018

I don’t remember ever being so confused before a draft.

It used to be — back when men were men and beat writers smoked four packs a day — that we’d have some sort of idea at least how the top five would go. We’d have a few surprises but they’d be minor. This year, the Cleveland Browns could blow everything up by taking the quarterback nobody thinks they should. If that happens, the Giants could take another quarterback, then the Jets another and, who knows what could happen with the fourth pick?

The only thing we do know is to expect the unexpected. Everything is on the table. Here’s how I think it might play out, Warning: I didn’t spend too much time on it.

1. Cleveland Browns: Sam Darnold, QB,  USC

I think Darnold has been the guy for months, but the NFL wants them to keep everyone guessing up until draft day.

2. New York Giants: Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn St.

Pretty much every old school scout says Barkley is the best player in the draft. The Giants are run by an old school scout. I think they’d take Darnold if he were available but aren’t enamored with the rest of the quarterbacks.

3. New York Jets: Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma

This has been the buzz for about a month. In my opinion, Mayfield is the best quarterback in the draft this year and they’ll sell him as the second coming of Broadway Joe.

4. Cleveland Browns: Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio St.

The first big surprise, I guess, but their interest in Ward was rumored a couple of months ago before everything went quiet. Ward really is a top-level cornerback prospect and those guys tend to go very high.

5. Denver Broncos: Bradley Chubb, Edge, NC State

Chubb is going to be a good player from Day One. I don’t think he’s ever going to be a premier pass rusher, but I do think he’s going to be terrific against the run and at least adequate at taking down quarterbacks. Don’t be surprised if the Bears moved up to this spot if the draft falls this way.

6. Indianapolis Colts: Quenton Nelson, G, Notre Dame

There is a lot of buzz about Roquan Smith being the pick here, but I think that’s Chris Ballard intentionally leaking information. I think Nelson is their guy but they don’t want to risk a team moving ahead of them to take him. They have to protect Andrew Luck at some point, right?

7. Buffalo Bills: Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming

I think this is the first prime trade-up spot for teams. The Bills can move from 12 to 7 without giving up their second first round pick. The other teams possibly pondering a quarterback would have a hard time getting the ammunition to move much higher than this.

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The Official 2017 Mock Draft

| April 26th, 2017

The NFL’s annual impossible to predict event is upon us and once again I take a shot at trying to predict it:

1. Cleveland Browns: Myles Garrett, Edge, Texas A&M

Garrett is the consensus first overall pick and I expect the Browns to just pull the trigger and figure out how to grab a quarterback later.

2. (Trade) Jacksonville Jaguars: Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson

So much talk about the Jaguars trying to find a way to succeed with Blake Bortles. Why? If the conversation is at that point, they should just replace him and I see Tom Coughlin as liking Watson enough to leapfrog the Bears.

3. Chicago Bears: Mitch Trubisky, QB, North Carolina

There are two QBs who are worth a top pick and I think the Bears agree with me. Trubisky has a lot of traits that any QB-needy team would want.

4. San Francisco 49ers: Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU

People I really respect keep saying the 49ers love Fournette. It doesn’t sound right because Kyle Shannahan’s offense has worked with lesser running backs but they could see Fournette as being the first building block of their offense.

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Mock Mock Draft 3.0

| April 26th, 2016


Shit happened since the last Mock Mock draft, huh? The first two picks were traded, the third and fourth picks are huge question marks and the previous consensus top pick could plummet. Oh, and the top linebacker supposedly has a bum knee that will prevent him from having a long career. Shit definitely happened.

The Rams and Eagles made big moves for quarterbacks who definitely aren’t consensus top picks. Hell, one of them was thought of as a late-round sleeper last December. That caused a huge shakeup in the top 10 picks, but probably doesn’t effect the Bears pick too much.

The final Mock Mock Draft is going to have some pretty big changes from last time. At least, I think it will, I don’t even remember who I had going where. Shit, I don’t even remember who I had the Bears picking.

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Across The Middle: Mock Mock Draft 2.0

| April 6th, 2016


Here we go again. My first mock mock draft came before free agency started, which means there have been a ton of changes, especially at the top of the draft and with the Bears.

What I don’t have is changes at the very top. I think the Titans and Browns are pretty much locked into who they are going to take and both picks make a lot of sense. After that, however, it’s anyone’s guess.

By now, the Bears are likely keying in on a handful of players they either want to take at 11 or will try to trade back. I did a “big board” a couple weeks ago, but this is very fluid. If I did that again, there would be several changes.

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In Blogger Mock Draft, DBB Selects…

| March 5th, 2015

Matt Falk at Draft Season contacted me (of all people) to partake in a blogger mock draft. And with the 7th pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, DaBearsBlog selected…

Vic Beasley LB, Clemson

Analysis: I have a phrase I use when watching college football: “jump off the screen”. These are the players that just look a step above everyone else around them. Beasely was one of these guys. In 2013. Then he made what I thought was the ludicrous decision to return to Clemson for another season. Doesn’t seem so ludicrous now as I’m taking him with the 7th pick.

Why would the Bears take him here? Why not? They need absolutely everything on the defensive side of the ball and I think when they line up Shane Ray, Randy Gregory and Vic Beasely side-by-side-by-side they will see Beasely best fits what John Fox and Vic Fangio want to do defensively.

To read the entire mock draft, CLICK HERE.

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