Bears Targets, Day 2
Bears should be able to snag at least two of these guys at 39 and 48, if not another at 71. Pickens still being on the board makes him the clear and obvious main target; if he makes it 6 more picks, Poles should sprint that card in. Otherwise, you know the drill: build the line and the defensive depth.
- George Pickens
- Bernhard Raimann
- Christian Watson
- Jamaree Salyer
- Andrew Booth Jr
- Zach Tom
- Logan Hall
- Dylan Parham
- David Bell
- Tariq Woolen
Bears Day 2 Mock Draft
The goals I’ve outlined in previous articles are still attainable.
Top 5 Day 1 Hauls
I will only be analyzing how well these teams did in the parameters of the 1st Round (after 8 o’clock yesterday). Players gained in trades conducted yesterday for 1st rounders are included. Fitting a team need while being patient and not reaching is the most valued trait here. Over-drafting, drafting a poor fit, or ignoring biggest needs all dock points.
- Ravens: Kyle Hamilton, Tyler Linderbaum
The Ravens were able to get two of my top 5 players with two first round picks past 12. Hamilton and Linderbaum are the bar none best players in the draft at two devalued positions, but those just so happen to positions the Ravens needed. The Ravens had stocked up on mid round picks with the obvious intention of trading up; they decided instead to move Hollywood Brown, and then still traded back from the spot gained, picking up another 4th rounder. Both will start Day 1 and likely excel in their schemes. Hamilton in particular makes the Ravens secondary the best in the League.
- Jets: Ahmad Gardner, Garrett Wilson, Jermaine Johnson
The Jets were winning the night by simply being in a good position to take good players- and then they traded up to stop another good player’s fall. Gardner was another of my top 5 players, while Wilson and Johnson were both top 25. All will start immediately, and all fill the Jets biggest needs- playing it easy on EDGE at 4 was probably the right move. Wilson and Elijah Moore have fairly overlapping skill sets and that may cause some problems but using them in tandem shouldn’t hurt the on-the-field production.
- Giants: Kayvon Thibodeaux, Evan Neal
This is the ultimate ‘is the pre-draft hype machine real?”. If these two are dominant, as I expect them to be and as they were widely projected to be at the end of last year, the “draft consensus” is officially bunk. If they crap out for whatever reason, the consensus that re-evaluated both of them out of their #1 at their respective position status will be vindicated. It’s not so much boom or bust- I think both will be successful enough- as it is a reflection of the merits of the draft process.
- Eagles: Jordan Davis, Trade for AJ Brown
The Eagles had three first rounders at some point not too long ago. They only took one player, Jordan Davis, at a position where they have two veterans and third rounder for last year already in place. And yet Jordan Davis truly opens up the Eagles potential for the future. Cox and Hargrave will likely move on, and Davis can mix in readily right now. Moreover, trading for AJ Brown yields them a better receiver than any they were linked to with these picks. I disliked both Davis and receivers in my Eagles mocks, and yet their execution was so flawless I respect it.
- Bills: Kaiir Elam
Sometimes there’s nothing wrong with filling your teams biggest (and largely only) need. The Bills traded up two picks for it, which may have been unnecessary, but they walk away with my chalky pick for them and a new starter that diversifies the body types of their corner room while staying in scheme.
Bottom 5 Day 1 Hauls
- Patriots: Cole Strange
One must trust in Bill, I suppose. The Patriots needed a guard. Strange isn’t the worst fit for them- he could bear fruit. They traded back for him even. But you’d be hard pressed to find a scenario where Strange wouldn’t have been available at 54, and this team needs corners and linebackers a hell lot more. Taking a shot and over-drafting a guard, where they’ve shown remarkable ability at developing late round starters, has to be labeled a bad pick. Because it’s the Patriots, Strange will probably work out. But I doubt it, and the holes on this team will continue to compound.
- Steelers: Kenny Pickett
This is just silly. I would understand this if Willis and Ridder were off the board; but they were not. Pickett seems to have been taken because he has the highest floor in the class and was known in the building; in a class this bad, the “highest floor” means nothing in the 1st round. Pickett will stably lead the Steelers to 7-10 wins a year and no playoff success. It’s like they got so used to Ben they decided they liked settling for mediocrity. He will start for them, and he will likely be just alright- but the likelihood of this 24-year-old one-year wonder to elevate the Steelers over the AFC’s firepower is not high, and is notably less high than that of Malik Willis or Desmond Ridder.
- Commanders: Jahan Dotson
This is not a complaint about Dotson- I simply think the Commanders took him too early and that he does not what they lack in a meaningful way. He is more physical than Curtis Samuel but leaving Carson Wentz with a starting quartet of <6’ receivers seems like a recipe for disaster. I don’t think this pick improved this team unless they plan to do something drastic to Terry McLaurin, Curtis Samuel, or Dyami Brown (and even that would not be an improvement.
- Saints: Chris Olave, Trevor Penning
Hopefully the Saints had some insider knowledge that made them think Olave wouldn’t last 5 more picks. Otherwise, taking him that early to be your #2 and field stretcher strikes me as rash. Like the player, don’t like the strategy. For their second pick, they took Trevor Penning to start at left tackle- that experiment is going to be extraordinarily rocky for Jameis (or whoever is under center after him) in the years to come. Penning was a good college run blocker against subpar talent- he is also a penalty liability and extremely underdeveloped as a pass protector, something that was exposed repeatedly at the Senior Bowl by guys who were NOT drafted yesterday.
- Cardinals: Marquise Brown for 1st Round pick
This may be a controversial addition. Brown is a fine Christian Kirk replacement and reuniting him with his college quarterback makes sense, both in football terms and in pleasing Kyler’s ego terms. But this team has notable holes at outside corner, outside linebacker, D tackle, and interior offensive line. Their need at receiver should be mitigated by re-signing AJ Green and second rounder last year Rondale Moore. That room would have lacked speed, but speed could have been found later in this draft and then kept under contract for cheaper longer. The talent reduction may have been there, but it’s worth remembering that Marquise Brown’s talent can be spotty at times as well. Overall, I understand this, but I wouldn’t have done it.