Picking so low in draft leaves Bears with uncertainty
With much likely to change before No. 29, they must prepare for numerous scenarios
On the NFL
7:48 PM CDT, April 27, 2011
It takes foresight to draft well, certainly. But it also takes luck. And in one scenario being played out in NFL draft rooms across the country, the Bears could be in for some of it.
Barring something completely unexpected, these are six strongest possibilities for the Bears when the 29th pick in the first round comes up around 10:15 p.m. Thursday.
1. One of the top four offensive tackles takes a fortuitous plunge.
Some projections have Wisconsin offensive tackle Gabe Carimi being chosen as high as the late teens. But if a third quarterback and another offensive lineman like Baylor guard Danny Watkins sneaks in ahead of the 29th pick, Carimi could slip.
The other tackle in the top four who could slide is Colorado offensive tackle Nate Solder. Some teams rate Solder as the second best tackle; others believe Carimi will go ahead him.
Either likely would thrill the Bears.
The difference between them? Carimi is more of a right tackle and might not have the feet to play on the left side. Solder is more of a left tackle and pass protector who needs to develop strength for run blocking.
2. The top four tackles are gone, so the Bears settle on Mississippi State's Derek Sherrod.
The tackle depth is so good this year that the Bears could end up with the fifth best and still walk away whistling. At one point, it appeared all five would be gone at 29. Now there appears to be a good chance at least one will be there.
Sherrod probably could step in and start at left or right tackle.
3. They decide to go with a guard instead of a tackle.
Guard arguably is a position of greater need for the Bears, and if the front office has Watkins rated ahead of Sherrod, or if the top five tackles are gone, the Bears could choose Watkins. At Baylor, Watkins played left tackle, but his best position in the NFL will be guard.
4. Trade down.
Put it this way, when the Bears pick approaches, general manager Jerry Angelo is going to make sure the phone line isn't tied up.
The Bears will be all ears.
Their best hope is a run on the second tier of quarterbacks. If four quarterbacks are chosen before the Bears' pick arrives, one of the teams picking high in the second round could jump up to get a chance at the last of the second tier, which includes Andy Dalton, Jake Locker and Christian Ponder.
If the Bears trade down, they might have to settle for 2011 second round pick and a 2012 draft pick as compensation.
5. Go for help on the defensive line.
It is unlikely any Rod Marinelli-style defensive tackle will be on the board at 29 who is worthy of a first-round pick. From a talent standpoint, Marvin Austin may be, but most teams have downgraded him because of how he has carried himself. Austin might make more sense for the Bears in a trade-down scenario.
Six defensive ends likely will be off the board before the Bears select. The best one remaining may be Ohio State's Cameron Heyward, who is a better fit in a 3-4 than a 4-3.
Three other pass rushers could be considered in that range. Two of them, Georgia's Justin Houston and Iowa's Christian Ballard, reportedly flunked drug tests at the combine. That will diminish their chances of going so high.
The most logical pass rusher for the Bears could be Arizona's Brooks Reed. The 29th spot would seem a little high to take him, but he could be a fallback pick.
Other pass rushing options are Martez Wilson of Illinois and Akeem Ayers of UCLA. Both could be a first- and second-down linebackers, and third-down rushers.
6. Think outside the box.
The Bears could ignore the big guys and make a selection hardly anyone would expect — perhaps a cornerback (Texas' Aaron Williams fits their system perfectly) or a wide receiver (Pittsburgh's Jonathan Baldwin has size and big-play ability).
But those picks wouldn't make sense if Carimi or Solder is hanging around at 29.
Nothing said that hasn't been said before. I think we can pretty we erase the possibilites of a CB or WR though I wouldn't put a DE completely past them if they thought they could find a 3t DT somewhere farther down the line.
I'm getting to that age where a lifetime warranty just doesn't mean as much to me anymore as an afternoon nap.
Honey Badger Don't Care. Honey Badger Don't Give a Shit.