With the 2020 NFL Draft almost upon us, we prepare you for what to expect with the Chicago Bears NFL Draft Guide.
We get a much-needed respite from the pandemic this week when the 2020 NFL Draft takes place. What moves does general manager Ryan Pace have up his sleeve to try to get the team back to the playoffs? We have this Chicago Bears NFL Draft Guide to help the fans get an idea of the team’s needs and what to expect.
There are several areas where the Bears have needs. Some needs that the fans feel are big may not be as big for the team. Some want the Bears to pick seven offensive linemen to help protect whoever is the quarterback in 2020. Well, the Bears signed Germain Ifedi and Jason Spriggs and re-signed their own Rashaad Coward so offensive line might not be a big priority for them. They likely go to the middle or late rounds to pick up a lineman to add depth, not to look for a starter.
Quarterback may be an area of need despite trading for Nick Foles. There’s a chance that neither Foles nor Mitchell Trubisky could even be on the roster in 2021 so the Bears need to have someone who could step in and start next season. Also, considering how the quarterback competition might be stacked against him, Pace may shock the NFL world and trade Trubisky to pick up extra draft picks.
Wide receiver is also a need. This is a good year to have a need because this could be the deepest wide receivers class ever. The Bears have Allen Robinson (when will they get an extension done?) and Anthony Miller, but questions after that. Riley Ridley is practically a draft pick as he played sparingly last season. Javon Wims isn’t more than a place holder. He’ll play a few snaps but don’t expect him to have an impact.
With the Bears cutting Trey Burton and a 33-year old Jimmy Graham now the main tight end, the Bears should be looking for a tight end who should end up being the starter. The team has about 500 tight ends on the roster but after Graham, there isn’t much talent there.
On defense, the Bears need to add help at safety, cornerback, and defensive tackle. Of those, the most important may be on the defensive line. With Nick Williams gone, a backup for Eddie Goldman is critical. He’s a big part of the rush defense and he needs to stay healthy so he continues to play well.
The Perfect Draft Weekend
If the Chicago Bears could add depth to some of their key positions that would be great. Last season, we saw what happens when there isn’t good depth. The entire right side of the line went down but there wasn’t effective backup. As a result, the rushing attack practically ignored going to that side. That put pressure on the other side of the line, as defenses stacked the left side.
We saw how depth helped the team. No, the defense didn’t dominate the way it did in 2018, but the unit still finished fourth in points allowed. That happened despite key injuries. Both inside linebackers, Danny Trevathan and Roquan Smith, went down for the season. Their backups, Nick Kwiatkoski and Kevin Pierre-Louis, stepped up and played big.
The Bears also need to have a potential starting quarterback in the pipeline in case Foles and Trubisky are gone. Foles can void his contract after the season and become a free agent. He might be too expensive for the Bears to re-sign. Trubisky can become a free agent if the Bears don’t pick up his fifth-year option in May.
If the Bears make smart trades they could pick up more picks and help the team more. If they could acquire more picks, especially in the middle rounds, they’ll be in a good position to improve from last season.
If the Bears trade draft picks to continually move up would be a huge mistake. Pace tends to give up capital to get the prospect he falls in love with. We saw that with Trubisky and Leonard Floyd. Those moves haven’t exactly worked out.
Pace has a better history of drafting in the middle rounds than early. If he could pick up some middle-round picks he could still find some good talent.
Also, this year might not be the one to go after under-the-radar talent. He cannot make the mistake of over-valuing small school prospects like he did with Adam Shaheen. To look at some of the players he bypassed because he fell in love with Shaheen is mind-boggling. Pace’s job might be on the line so if he takes another huge gamble and misses out again, he could end up finding himself looking for another job.
Questions Surrounding the Team
In a word, offense. The offensive unit struggled mightily in 2019. It ranked 29th in both points scored and total yards. Also, the passing game ranked 25th in both yards and touchdowns.
The running game was even worse. It ranked 27th in yards, 28th in touchdowns, and 29th in yards per rush.
All of this must improve. With the elite Chicago Bears defense, though, it doesn’t have to be a drastic change. As bad as the offense struggled in 2019, they were still close to being much better. Of their eight losses, five of them were by eight points or less. That’s one possession. If the offense could just be on the field long enough so the defense wasn’t exhausted at the end, thus giving up a game-winning drive (as what happened against the Los Angeles/Las Vegas Raiders). If the offense could just score a touchdown instead of settling for a field goal (as what happened against the Los Angeles Chargers).
Teams like the New York Giants (21.3 ppg), Detroit Lions (21.3 ppg), and Arizona Cardinals (22.6 ppg) averaged more points than the Bears’ 17.5 points per game, yet had losing records. If the Bears could get to over 20 points per game they could easily win the division and compete for a title.
Players to Watch
Jalen Hurts, Quarterback, Oklahoma
If the Bears want a young quarterback who could step in and eventually be the starter, Jalen Hurts is the guy. He can beat defenses with his arm or his legs. He runs the RPO (run/pass option) flawlessly and he’d fit head coach Matt Nagy’s system like a glove.
Grant Delpit, Safety, LSU
Grant Delpit could be available at 43. If he is there (and the Bears still have that pick) Pace needs to pick him up. He’ll be the instant starter at strong safety and would complement Eddie Jackson. He provides great run support and he helps on wide receiver screens. He is a physical player and tackles well and fits the Chicago Bears tradition of hard-hitting defensive players.
McTelvin Agim, Defensive Tackle, Arkansas
McTelvin Agim will provide Goldman with all the rest he needs to stay fresh. Agim gets to the backfield with a variety of moves and a killer spin move. Also, he has good lateral movement to help clog up space and stop the run.
We hope this Chicago Bears NFL Draft Guide assists you in enjoying the draft even more. It’ll be interesting to see how it turns out.