The playoffs have reached the conference championship stage, and the NFL Draft is yet three months away, but with so much riding on this year’s group for the Bears, it’s going to rightly remain a headline story for the duration.
Furthermore, and of a more timely note, the deadline for underclassmen to declare their intention to enter the draft passed yesterday. Thus, the full crop of available players is now known.
At CBS, the Bears take Alabama defensive end Jonathan Allen, after the Browns takes Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett first overall, and the 49ers take UNC quarterback Mitch Trubisky. Although the Bears have an obvious need long-term at quarterback, and although their greatest defensive need is probably in the secondary, it could be hard to pass on Allen, regardless of positional need. And although he’s not going to go out there and play safety, Allen does offer the versatility to move all over the defensive line.
Just a taste of his unique athleticism (keeping in mind that he’s 6’3″ and nearly 300 pounds):
At Fox Sports, the Bears wind up with Allen … once again after the Browns take Garrett, and the 49ers take Trubisky. As Dieter Kurtenbach rightly notes, even if the Bears have other needs, if Allen is the clear second best player in the draft behind Garrett, it’d be perfectly acceptable to select him at three.
Meanwhile, at Draft Wire, the top two picks play out the same way, but the Bears go for LSU safety Jamal Adams instead of Allen. Luke Easterling calls Adams “the most polished, NFL-ready prospect in the entire draft,” and given the Bears’ needs out in the secondary, the pick would make sense.
For what it’s worth, on Mel Kiper’s latest Big Board, Adams ranks as the 6th best player in the draft, while Garrett and Allen are up at one and two. Adams near the top of the draft is hardly a reach.