It’s the dawning another era for the Monsters of the Midway with new GM RYAN PACE and HC JOHN FOX doing the grocery shopping in Chicago. They don’t have a full compliment of picks to work with, but if your missing a pick Round 7 is the place. They need more talent throughout the roster, but expect Defense to get the most attention.
Round 1, Pick 7 VICTOR BEASLEY/DE/LB/CLEMSON/6’3/246 GBN Rank: 7
After his showing at the Combine at his new weight, he looks to have as good a set of numbers as any of a large group of premier Edge Rushers. His 4.53/40 was blazing for a guy just shy of 250 lbs. But his 35 reps in the Bench Press was even more impressive. He’s clearly a freakish athlete and FOX will find his sweet spot so that he can start from Day One. Let’s call him just what the doctor ordered.
Round 2, Pick 39 DEVIN SMITH/WR/OHIO STATE/6’0/196 GBN Rank: 44
The trade of MARSHALL to the JETS has left the team a bit shy in the receiver corps. Their best two vets are JEFFERY & BENNETT, both big guys. SMITH, who averaged over 28 yards per catch for the Buckeyes last season, should be the long-ball threat CUTLER needs to loosen up opposing secondaries. His 4.42/40 put him in the elite speed category, and he might play just as fast in pads. Once again a quality player at the pick and he fills a major need area for the team.
Round 3, Pick 71 JAQUISKI TARTT/SS/SAMFORD/6’1/221 GBN Rank: 71
The last time DA BEARS drafted a big Safety like this guy they let him bulk up and he became a terror at MLB by the name of URLACHER. I am not predicting such a projection for TARTT, but he is a big S who can also run with most RB/TE types, with his 4.53/40 speed. MOst of his skills coming into the League will be best showcased in-the-box, but more will be expected with time. He has a reputation as a tough, hard working kid who loves to play the game. The question is how soon will he be able to handle a starting job?
Round 4, Pick 106 KWON ALEXANDER/OLB/LSU/6’01/227 GBN Rank: 109
Very good value at this Pick. He started 23 games in 3 years at LSU, which is actually a lot on that talent laden roster. His best skill right now is his coverage ability on Special Teams. But few doubt that he will develop into a starting NFL LB, who has the athleticism to stay on the field for passing downs. He ran a 4.55/40 at the Combine. His 24 reps in the bench press should tell you he has functional strength. Expect ALEXANDER to earn a starting job before the 2015 season is over. The best news is he might keep that job for quite some time, ala LANCE BRIGGS.
Round 5, Pick 142 B.J. FINNEY/C/KANSAS STATE/6’4/318 GBN Rank: 144
The former walk-on parlayed FBI and hard work into quite a success story for the Wildcats, starting 52 of 52 games during his college career. He even swung outside to play LT because of injuries along the line in his final college game. He’s a former wrestler and knows how to hand fight with defenders and stay on his feet. I would expect him to battle for the starting OC job with GARZA now gone. If he doesn’t start initially expect him to back up all 3 Interior OL positions. He ain’t pretty, but he is effective and a hard worker, which will be much appreciated by BEARS fandom.
Round 6, Pick 182 DAMIAN SWANN/CB/GEORGIA/6’0/189 GBN Rank: 185
SWANN isn’t flashy, but he’s a savvy vet, having played in 50 games during his Bulldogs career. He stays with his man and has the ability to find the ball in the air and knock balls away from receivers. He is also a willing and effective tackler. He has fairly long arms (31″), and ran a respectable 4.51/40 at the Combine. At worst he’s a nice sub-package addition to the roster, and should see plenty of action. But if a job opening occurs, and he hits the field, he may be very hard to displace. Good value this late.