There is an ample amount of risk (and naturally, reward) when it comes to NFL prospects; however, there is always a handful that comes with slightly more certainty (to the extent that “certainty” exists) than the rest.
To that end, NFL.com draft analyst Chad Reuter put together a list of the 15 safest prospects available in April’s draft, and you’ll definitely want to check it out:
Between the two lists, you’ll find a group of players spanning 10 different positions. And more importantly, four of those prospects (two on offense and two on defense) are considered to be strong fits for the Bears.
For example, Stanford defensive lineman Solomon Thomas and LSU safety Jamal Adams are two of the most high-profile names in this draft, and Reuter has deemed both “safe fits” for the Bears. Thomas is a player whose stock is rising and seems increasingly likely to be picked in the top five. As for Adams, he is one the most highly regarded secondary prospects in the draft, and there is a growing consensus of pundits tying him to the Bears. If the Bears decide to draft Adams, it will be a move that was a long time in the making.
Alabama offensive tackle Cam Robinson ranks as the third best prospect at the position according to the prospect board at CBS Sports. However, his particular draft future is unclear, as CBS lists him as either a first or second-round selection. His performance wasn’t always great at Alabama, but he was a five-star recruit out of high school and a three-year starter in college. It’s unlikely, but if Robinson slipped to the second round of the draft, he could represent the kind of upgrade the Bears’ offensive line needs. After all, Reuter believes Robinson is the type of prospect who can develop into a 10-year starter at his position – something the Bears’ line hasn’t had in a while.
Zay Jones stole the show at the Senior Bowl, and his stock has been steadily on the rise ever since. Still, it’s unclear where he’ll land in the draft. Reuter sees Jones – the son of former NFL linebacker Robert Jones – as a player similar to the former New York Giants’ second-round selection, Sterling Shepard. Jones’ best skills include his route-running abilities and sure hands, which would be welcome additions for new quarterback Mike Glennon.
Unfortunately, the Bears won’t be able to draft all of these players (let alone any). But targeting enough of these safer-types could help raise the talent level throughout the roster.