The Bears have been proactive so far in free agency, so it’s worth reviewing their draft strategy with a 7 round mock. Being able to lock up Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, and Trey Burton is going to be a huge help to young QB Mitchell Trubisky. As far as the overall team goes however, there are still some moves that need to be made in order to fully give the Bears a chance heading into the 2018-2019 NFL season. This is, of course, assuming no trades will be made involving the Chicago Bears.
Round 1 (#8 overall)- Roquan Smith, LB, Georgia
Roquan Smith is the prospect who stands out to me the most of any I have watched so far. In my opinion, he’s far and away the best player in the entire draft. Not only is he a freak athlete with outstanding range, his football IQ is absolutely insane. He’s almost always right where he has to be when he has to be there. The Bears definitely need to buff up there front 7 and adding a guy as talented as Roquan Smith would be perfect.
Round 2 (#39 overall)- Will Hernandez, G, UTEP
I know a lot of Bears fans would love to have Quenton Nelson, but ending up with a guy like Will Hernandez in the second round is a more than adequate consolation prize. Will Hernandez’s combination of athleticism and strength could really benefit the offensive line. Bears fans should consider themselves extremely lucky (and a bit spoiled) if they end up with Kyle Long and Will Hernandez as their two guards heading into next season.
Round 4 (#105 overall)- Auden Tate, WR, Florida State
Auden Tate was unlucky during his time at Florida State. He was injured on and off and his star-studded QB Deiondre Francois ended up missing last year. With that being said, Tate is 6’5 and a huge target which will benefit QB Mitchell Trubisky greatly, especially considering the fact they’ll have a guy like Allen Robinson on the opposite side of the field. If you’re a smaller corner, you will get destroyed by Auden Tate and there’s really no way around it. He knows how to use his body and size to give him an advantage against cornerbacks and I think that’ll benefit him greatly when he gets to the NFL.
Round 4 (#115 overall)- J.C. Jackson, CB, Maryland
One thing you’ll learn about me if you haven’t already is that I absolutely love cornerbacks who are physical and know how to jam wide receivers at the line of scrimmage. J.C. Jackson definitely has a lot to work on because there were too many times this year where he got burned and started becoming grabby, but the talent is definitely there. Learning behind the likes of Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara could prove to be very beneficiary for Jackson.
Round 5 (#145 overall)- JoJo Wicker, DL, Arizona State
In another attempt to beef up the front 7 and in this case, the defensive line, the Bears should be licking their chops if Wicker falls to them in the 5th round. He was one of the best defensive linemen in the entire country last year and while he can get to the quarterback, he’s just as good in run support. Wicker finished the year with 13 tackles for loss and 6 sacks.
Round 6 (#181 overall)- Tray Matthews, S, Auburn
Tray Matthews has gotten a lot better in coverage, but he still struggles when he’s playing high safety. One thing he doesn’t struggle with is wrapping guys up and making sure they don’t get past him. He is a hard hitter and was a leader for the Auburn defense last season and that type of leadership is something teams love in a young prospect. At this point, you start looking for the best available and Matthews definitely fits that.
Round 7 (#224 overall)- Joe Ostman, EDGE, Central Michigan
This may not be a flashy pick, but Joe Ostman has proven time and time again that he could be a successful edge rusher in the NFL. He finished last season with 12 sacks for Central Michigan and although some will argue that he played against weak competition, the talent jumps out at you right away. He loves to use his speed and quickness to get around offensive linemen and in a way, he kind of reminds me of Leonard Floyd when he was coming out.
These picks are all subject to change, but I think this is a good place to start after seeing the first wave of free agency. The Bears look to be set for the future (on paper at least).