As Chicago’s turn in the Draft finally rolled around on day two, fans eagerly anticipated hearing “George Pickens, Wide Receiver, Georgia.” It didn’t happen. Instead, the Bears addressed an immediate concern in a porous secondary. Surprisingly, Pickens remained on the board as the Bears’ next pick came a few moments later. Again, GM Ryan Poles took a defensive player.
Poles finally addressed the need for offensive fire power in the third round with the selection of lesser-known Velus Jones Jr. Groans and moans of frustration littered Chicago Bears Twitter, but it takes little rationalizing to get excited about Chicago’s draft haul. Call it a step of grief, but Velus’ selection could represent the 4D game of chess going on at Halas Hall.
It’s time to add some variety to the wide receiver room. Last year, the Bears had enough speedy, short receivers to field a 4×100 relay team, but the offense stalled miserably in the redzone. Watson or Pickens would make for solid goal-line fade options, but Velus Jones Jr. shows flashes of Deebo Samuel-esque versatility. In other words, he adds a dynamic not seen in Chicago since Tarik Cohen in 2018.
Round 2 was too early for a WR
Poles simply will not overbid for talent. He also won’t make splashes, like his predecessor, just to win over public opinion. Of the wide receivers available in the second round, Christian Watson was decent running seams against FCS secondaries, Skyy Moore has a highlight tape made up of five-yard slants, and George Pickens is one year removed from an ACL surgery. Poles clearly saw more value in two lockdown, highly rated defensive backs.
Part of the broader strategy
To be fair, the former Volunteer would have likely fallen to the fourth round or later. However, knowing now what Poles had in store for day three, it makes sense to snatch up a receiver that Justin Fields specifically requested. Does his older age of 25 really matter if he is hungry, mature, and stamped with Field’s approval?
If Draft Day phone calls mean anything at all, Velus Jones Jr.’s conversation with Matt Eberflus should be reason enough for all fans to give him a chance. Like the entire franchise, our new wide receiver is out to prove the doubters wrong.