General manager Phil Emery had designs on a young quarterback in this draft, and a cluster of them lasted surprisingly into the fourth round on Saturday.
Unfortunately the rest of the NFL saw the same thing. And some of the Bears’ 2013 opponents made decisive moves to grab what they view as talented backups and potential starters.
The result was a run on quarterbacks that started with Philadelphia Eagles, who immediately traded up to the top spot of the fourth round, 98th overall, and selected USC’s Matt Barkley, projected by some as high as the late first or mid second round.
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Perhaps sensing the Bears and others lurking with quarterback intent, the New York Giants traded up from No. 116 (one ahead of the Bears) to No. 110 and snatched Syracuse’s Ryan Nassib. The pick was a clear statement on the value of a young, quality backup: Eli Manning is not going anywhere soon.
Tampa Bay, despite Josh Freeman in place, struck two picks later for Arkansas quarterback Tyler Wilson, believed to be a favorite of the Bears’ staff. The Pittsburgh Steelers, with Ben Roethlisberger ensconced as the starter but also a battered one, selected Oklahoma’s Landry Jones at 115.
The Bears, sitting at 117 but short on draft choices for trading up, went instead for Rutgers linebacker Khaseem Greene.