Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Chicago Bears 2012 Draft Thoughts
First, let's start with their first round pick, Shea McClellin. Out of Boise State, I didn't know much about him until analysts started talking about him and breaking down his draft stock. Apparently he has a very high motor and a knack to be around the ball. I still question this pick because the Bears have a pretty strong core of linebackers. I know Briggs and Urlacher are not ageless and their time will come to an end in the next five years or so, but the Bears had more pressing needs than for a guy they are not sure as to how exactly they would use. The Bears also could have gone for Stanford guard David DeCastro with that first pick to help plug up the offensive line and give Jay Cutler much needed time to throw the football. This would have been the safer pick, but Phil Emery took a bit of a flier with McClellin, and only time will tell if he made a good call.
Moving on, the Bears traded up to get South Carolina wide receiver Alshon Jeffery in the second round. Jeffery is big and athletic despite lacking some burst off the line and ability to get separation. I watched him play at South Carolina and liked what I saw. Him and Marshall are two huge targets for Cutler and will give the Bears some legit receivers instead of undersized guys like Devin Hester. Jeffery has the potential to start right away and make a big impact in his rookie season.
For the rest of the draft, the Bears went on to address issues in the secondary and took Temple tight end Evan Rodriguez in hopes that he could stretch the field. Martz's systems had such a limited role for tight ends that it will be interesting to see how they will use Rodriguez in a new system. The guys the Bears got in the secondary (Hardin, Frey, McCoy) all come with risk and not necessarily starting potential yet, but in time they can possibly be impact players. I am still a little surprised there was no attention paid to the offensive or defensive lines. On the offensive side, that group on paper right now is just not very good. On the defensive side of the ball, they need someone who can take some pressure off Peppers and create a strong pass rush. How they plan to address those issues with the draft now over is a mystery to most Bears fans. They must have faith that the group now can get it done.
Let me know your thoughts on how the Bears drafted and what you liked/disliked about it. Feel free to chime in.