Draft Day 2: Bears have some enticing opportunities

746884.png

Draft Day 2: Bears have some enticing opportunities

Back when the draft was done over two days Rounds 1-3 on Saturday, 4-7 on Sunday teams looked forward to the overnight between the days. That was the time to inventory draft boards sometimes scrambled by day one events, and very often a gem had somehow slipped through.Alex Brown was such a nugget in 2002, a first-round talent whod drifted down for fuzzy reasons. So was Nathan Vasher in 2004. And Roosevelt Colvin and Warrick Holdman in 1999.The Bears hold the 18th pick of the second round, 50th overall. It will be up to GM Phil Emery and his staff to move on nuggets when the rounds start again Friday evening.Theres a couple different ways we can go in the second round, especially in the third, fourth and fifth rounds in terms of having flexibility the rest of the draft, Emery said. Getting a defensive end makes the rest of the scenario work for us the best possible way.The trade for Brandon Marshall and signings of Devin Thomas and Eric Weems dialed down urgency for addressing wide receiver. Running back Michael Bush, quarterback Jason Campbell andguard Chilo Rachal those and others gave the Bears quality veteran depth and allow the Bears to truly pursue a best player available.Wide receiverStephen Hill from Georgia Tech was the Combine sensation with his initial 40-yard dash time in the 4.2s. Some projections put him into the first round despite virtually no college production, in part because of a non-passing scheme.Hill rightly went nowhere in the first round. He will in the second, probably sooner rather than later.The same for Alshon Jeffery out of South Carolina. LSUs Rueben Randle did not get a first-round phone call but should not have long to wait on Friday.Offensive linePerhaps the biggest surprise ofRound 1was the number of offensive linemen projected as possible No. 1s who are still on the board: tackles Mike Adams from Ohio State, Jonathan Martin from Stanford, guards Cordy Glenn from Georgia and Amini Silatolu, and Wisconsin center Peter Konz.Most were on the cusp of Round 1, arguably overrated by some analysts, but they do represent quality now in Round 2. The Bears selected McClellin because they had him rated higher than any of the available offensive linemen when their turn came at No. 19.That player McClellin was at that spot at that time and he was the highest rated player we had, Emery said.CornerbackNational Football Post draft analyst Wes Bunting said during the NFL Scouting Combine that cornerback is a value area of the draft class. Three went in the first 17 picks but Bunting concluded that starter-level cornerbacks would be available in rounds 2 and 3.Brandon Boykin from Georgia, Nebraskas Alfonzo Dennard and Trumaine Johnson from Montana are that group. Janoris Jenkins from North Alabama was rated a first-round talent but with off-field issues that have him off many boards entirely.

Want to be in on Bears QB deliberations? 'Look at the film'

Want to be in on Bears QB deliberations? 'Look at the film'

Back in 1992 the Dallas Cowboys were in draft deliberations around the No. 17 spot of the first round, looking for upgrades on defense. A scout made a suggestion that they target Ohio State defensive end Alonzo Spellman, one of the most physically imposing (6-4, 280 pounds) players and best athletes in that draft.
 
Coach Jimmy Johnson responded, "Tell me about the production."
 
Came back the answer: Three years at OSU, nine total sacks.
 
"Oh, please!" Johnson scoffed, calling in cornerback Kevin Smith and leaving Spellman to the Bears at No. 22. Spellman had several respectable seasons but never more than 8.5 sacks in nine NFL seasons.
 
As investment advisers counsel, past performance is not necessarily a predictor of future results. But past performance can be, and an axiom in NFL personnel rooms is, look at the film.
 
CSNChicago.com is doing that as the NFL Scouting Combine approaches (Feb. 29) along with free agency and the start of the league year and its trading window. It becomes an increasingly relevant exercise to look at the intricacies behind some of the key players and positions the Bears will be addressing through the upcoming weeks. CSNChicago.com previously looked at the need to evaluate quarterbacks from the intangible standpoints first, then the measurables.
 
Using Jay Cutler as an object lesson for how immense physical skills have questionable correlations to immense NFL performance, a look at one aspect of quarterback "film" warrants more attention than the measurables that command a disproportionate share of attention and scrutiny.
 
Ball security.
 
It has been Cutler's single biggest issue through his eight Bears seasons, was a reason why coaches once wanted to stay with Josh McCown instead of returning to Cutler following a Cutler injury absence, and why Brian Hoyer played his way into prominence in the discussion of 2017 Bears plans. Adam Gase went from offensive coordinator to hottest head-coach prospect in no small measure because he managed Cutler into better ball security.

[SHOP: Get your Bears gear right here]
 
But the point here is less Cutler – expected to be traded or released within the near future – than the level of ball security in the available options beyond Hoyer.
 
So, look at the film:
 
The widespread drooling over a possible trade with New England for Jimmy Garoppolo. The best thing in Garoppolo's favor is that he has been a Patriots backup to Tom Brady. Garoppolo, drawing distant comparisons to a Matt Flynn, Matt Cassel and other past experience-lite quarterback options, has thrown 94 NFL passes without an interception, which is impressive until matched against Hoyer's 200 last season without an interception, for comparison purposes.
 
But evaluating Garoppolo against the coming chief draft competition – DeShone Kizer, Mitch Trubisky, Deshaun Watson – suggests comparing apples to apples, meaning college ball security, since that's all the kids have to this point.
 
Garoppolo vaulted up draft boards (to New England's second round) on the strength of an Eastern Illinois senior season with 53 touchdown passes vs. nine interceptions, against chiefly FCS opposition. But in his first three seasons Garoppolo threw for 65 touchdowns and was intercepted 42 times.
 
Kizer? In his two Notre Dame seasons, 47 touchdowns, 19 interceptions.
 
Trubisky? 30 touchdowns last season, six interceptions. Including his two years as a North Carolina backup, 41 touchdowns, 10 interceptions.
 
Watson? 90 touchdowns, 32 interceptions in three Clemson seasons, the last two as Tigers starter.
 
Observations:
 
Garoppolo put in four college seasons, but has a little of the Trubisky/Flynn/Cassel, one-year-wonder feel. 
 
Kizer and Watson have more starting seasons, but the Watson intangible of getting his team to two national-championship games speaks to another level of "intangible."
 
GM Ryan Pace will incorporate heavy input from coach John Fox and coordinator Dowell Loggains. Coaches love ball security. Garoppolo? Watson? Trubisky? Kizer?
 
Look at the film.

BearsTalk Podcast: The risk and reward for Bears in trading for Jimmy Garoppolo

jimmy-g-216.jpg
USA TODAY

BearsTalk Podcast: The risk and reward for Bears in trading for Jimmy Garoppolo

In this edition of the BearsTalk podcast, CSN's Chris Boden, Sun-Times Bears beat writer Patrick Finley, and CSNChicago.com's Scott Krinch discuss the Bears' approach to the two-week window opening to franchise-tag Alshon Jeffery again, the risk/reward in trading for Jimmy Garoppolo or drafting a QB (and how high to draft one), Scott's 2.0 mock draft, plus the workers' compensation controversy the team found itself in last week and the club's decision to raise ticket prices.

Listen to the full episode at this link or in the embedded player below: