The 2013 draft broke generally the way the Bears needed it to, producing potentially first-year starters with their two picks. But a surprisingly tight trade market denied them the hoped-for chance to trade down in either the first or second rounds in order to add a third- or fourth-round pick.
In the process it may have cost the Bears immediate shots at either a starter-grade cornerback or quality quarterback prospect.
The Bears still seek a cornerback but will have to hope to find him in the fourth round, not the third. And addressing the need for a young backup to Jay Cutler before cornerback may mean waiting for a quarterback in round five.
Kyle Orton was a hit with a fourth-round pick in 2005. Nathan Vasher was a win at 4 in 2004.
But quarterbacks taken round five or later have produced Craig Krenzel, Dan LeFevour, Nathan Enderle and Moses Moreno in the last 15 years.
And of cornerbacks taken after round four, only Zackary Bowman and Corey Graham have given the Bears even brief marginal contributions outside of special teams.
No. 1 pick Kyle Long projects to be an opening-day starter at guard or possibly even tackle. Second-rounder Jonathan Bostic will have a genuine chance to beat out D.J. Williams for the middle linebacker job.
But while the phones at Halas Hall did ring with a smattering of offers, the Bears were not able to deal down in rounds one or two for that extra pick.
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They were not alone in a difficult trade market. The Miami Dolphins were able to trade up from No. 13 to No. 3 in the first round, giving the Oakland Raiders only a second-round pick to move those 10 spots.
When the Dallas Cowboys dropped down 13 spots from 18 to 31, all they received from the San Francisco 49ers was one third-round pick.
“There has been a number of trades where teams didn’t get equal value,” Emery said. “I don’t have any explanation for that. I will tell you the Chicago Bears are probably not ever going to be one of those teams. If you’re going to trade with us, you are going to come up with equal value, especially if you are coming up to get our pick.”
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For the Bears to move up from the 20th pick in the fourth round (117th overall) to somewhere in the third round was going to cost no less than the Bears’ No. 2 pick in the 2014 draft. Trading a second rounder just for a third rounder made no sense and Emery stayed with remaining three picks (4-5-6).
“We don’t have enough value in the current picks that we still have to get into that round,” Emery said. “The only way we could do it would be to give up a next year’s ‘2’ and that right now does not make sense to us.”