The 2017 NFL Draft is exactly 24 days away and while the NFL was going through its dry period with little activity, we have seen some interesting headlines for the Chicago Bears. Jay Cutler’s butt took over the internet and cornerback Deiondre’ Hall was hanging out with a Green Bay Packer and was tased at a bar in Iowa.
Safe to say that these aren’t the greatest football related news stories people want to read about as we await the draft. In the mean time, take a look at my second go around of the Bears mock draft.
Round 1 – 3rd overall
Jamal Adams (S), LSU
Since my last mock draft, general manager Ryan Pace has added 11 new players in free agency. Three of them being in the secondary, but despite the much-needed additions, the Bears will upgrade it even further with Adams. Here is a chance for Pace to add a talented and aggressive player who will be a starter from Day 1. It’s been too long for Bears fans since they have had a safety they can be excited about. With NFL offenses passing the ball more than ever, it’s vital to have secondary players who can cover multiple offensive players and are capable of coming up in run support. Adams excels at both categories and this will only help defensive coordinator Vic Fangio when he uses his multitude of defenses. No longer can the Bears neglect the position that has been looking for an impact safety since Mike Brown.
Round 2 – 36th overall
Chris Wormley (DE), Michigan
Adding another pass rusher that can replace Mitch Unrein and help complete the defense is something the Bears must address in this draft. Wormley is someone who can help achieve just that. At 6-foot-5, 298-pounds he is capable of setting the edge and can also line up inside. He is a smart player, usually knowing when misdirection plays are coming and excels at staying discipline to avoid creating lanes in the defense. Head coach for the Wolverines, Jim Harbaugh gave high praise to his former senior captain. “Chris is a leader… the highest character, at the highest level.” He has all the qualities the Bears should be looking for when drafting someone who can be a key contributor on an ascending Bears’ defense.
Round 3 – 67th overall
Nathan Peterman (QB), Pittsburgh
Finally, Pace will draft a quarterback after deciding to skip out on that option in his first two seasons. Peterman will be a developmental quarterback, who will sit and learn under Mike Glennon and be coached up by Mark Sanchez. At his time at Pitt, Peterman helped the Panthers defeat Deshaun Watson’s Clemson Tigers, 43-42. In that game, he went 22 of 37 and threw for 308 yards and five touchdowns. He doesn’t stare down targets and will utilize the entire field when looking for a target. Peterman also has great presence in the pocket and won’t get frazzled as soon as things start to breakdown. The former Panther also has great touch on the football and delivers an accurate ball, regardless of the route combination or defense being played.
Round 4 – 108th overall
Carlos Henderson (WR), Louisiana Tech
Here is one of my previous prospects that I had in my first mock draft. Henderson is a guy who can line up in multiple positions along the Bears’ offense. At Louisiana Tech, he lined up in the backfield, in the slot and primarily at wide receiver. At 5-foot-11, 199-pounds I see him primarily lining up as a slot receiver. Henderson was also a kick return specialist, ranking 12th in college football for his 805 return yards on 25 attempts. The Bears may have signed Markus Wheaton and Kendall Wright in free agency but they will still be looking to add more playmakers that can help fill the void left by Alshon Jeffery.
Round 4 – 114th overall
Erik Magnuson (OT), Michigan
With the Bears second pick in the fourth round, they provide some depth at the tackle position. The versatile linemen has experience at both guard and tackle. At 6-foot-6, 305-pounds, Magnuson is most effective when it comes to run blocking. With standout running back Jordan Howard, the Bears would be wise to run the offense through him and that will only increase Magnuson’s chances of seeing the field. But, there are some areas where he can improve on. First, being his speed when the ball is snapped, to put him in the best position when dealing with talented edge rushers and second, increasing his strength to help seal and move opposing linemen.
Round 5 – 148th overall
George Kittle (TE), Iowa
Kittle is the final prospect that was also in my first mock draft. The Bears went and added tight end Dion Sims in free agency, but that doesn’t mean they won’t use a late pick to draft one. Kittle isn’t the biggest tight end, listed at 6-foot-4, 247-pounds but you wouldn’t want to go head up with him when it comes to blocking. He has shown on multiple occasions that he is capable of pancaking larger opponents. He also isn’t one-dimensional, he has soft hands and will rarely ever drop passes. I’ve seen what Kittle can do in person and he is a guy who will surprise some people once he gets an opportunity to do so.
Round 7 – 226th overall
Ezra Robinson (CB), Tennessee State
After the Bears added Prince Amukamara and Marcus Cooper in free agency, I decided that cornerback wasn’t as big of a need. Still, with their final pick, the Bears look to add Robinson to their secondary. He is listed at 5-foot-11, 177-pounds and given his size could be a developmental nickel back to start his career in the NFL. Robinson ended last season with a career-high five interceptions and returned two of those for touchdowns. The Bears also have expressed interest in bringing Robinson for a private workout. The Bears know they need to add some playmakers in the secondary and will not shy away from anyone when it comes to solving that issue.