The Bears’ 2013 draft started in earnest on Tuesday.
The structure of the offseason is usually such that free agency precedes the draft. Based on market options, an ideal is to address crucial needs with proven pro talent and fill the unfilled spots with early picks in the draft.
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Phase One played out Tuesday afternoon. Phase Two comes late next month.
The two positions most frequently projected for the top Bears picks were offensive line and tight end.
Done. With tight end Martellus Bennett signed, Notre Dame’s Tyler Eifert or Stanford’s Zach Ertz may end up a Bear, but it will because they were clear best-player-available’s rather than a “need” pick. Bennett was a second-round pick by Dallas in 2008 so consider him a solid pick at that spot.
The Bears addressed left tackle with Jermon Bushrod from New Orleans. D.J. Fluker from Alabama may be a franchise-grade right tackle, but the Bears reached the 2010 playoffs with a rookie J’Marcus Webb at right tackle. The Bears could opt for a Fluker but the tackle position was moved off the critical list on Tuesday afternoon.
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What the Bears would like but don’t have right now is a pick in the third round. Based on the draft trade value chart loosely used as a guide for dealing picks, the Bears’ No. 20 pick is worth 850 “points.” The Texans are at No. 27 (Minnesota has No. 25 and Green Bay No. 26, and they’re not likely trade partners for the Bears). Houston’s No. 1 is valued at 680 points; their third is pegged at 136.
The Bears trade down seven slots, keep a No. 1 and pick up a “3.”
That’s the kind of option Phil Emery gave himself on Tuesday.