Kiper Calls Tremaine Edmunds a "Great Fit" for Bears ... But Compares Quenton Nelson to a Hall of Fame Finalist

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Kiper Calls Tremaine Edmunds a “Great Fit” for Bears … But Compares Quenton Nelson to a Hall of Fame Finalist

Chicago Bears

Tremaine Edmunds has jumped into the fray, become a candidate for the top of the draft, and entered into the discussion of prospects the Bears could take with the eighth overall pick rather quickly.

ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. became the latest to mock Edmunds to the Bears, citing his tremendous athleticism, his versatility as a linebacker (who can play inside and outside), and the expectation that he puts up eye-popping numbers at March’s NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. All things considered, Edmunds sounds like the kind of prospect that would pique the interest of GM Ryan Pace and Defensive Coordinator Vic Fangio.

Kiper seems to think highly of Edmunds, too, labeling him as an ideal addition to the Bears’ top-10 defense. “Quarterbacks hate inside linebackers with height and length and wingspan, and that’s what he provides,” Kiper said of Edmunds, via Patrick Finley of the Chicago Sun-Times. “I actually like him better inside, but he can certainly play both. I think he’d be a great fit for the Chicago Bears.”

Notre Dame guard Quenton Nelson is a player who some believe might be a better fit and also happens to fit a need moving forward. Unfortunately for those fans, Kiper believes Nelson will be off the board by the time the Bears get on the clock with the eighth pick. Even though Kiper’s most recent mock has Nelson getting picked one spot ahead of the Bears, it’s possible he ends up in the top-5. And it’s not as if the Bears have the assets to trade up to take Nelson as they did when they acquired the second pick to select Mitch Trubisky a year go.

Based on Kiper’s pro comparison, there’s no wonder why there’s a belief Nelson won’t make it to the Bears at No. 8. “He just destroys people at the collegiate level,” Kiper said in talking about Nelson. “Steve Hutchinson … is a good comp. Had a great career in the NFL. I went back and looked at their size, their strength, their physical attributes, athletic numbers and they were very comparable.”

Hutchinson was a seven-time Pro Bowler, five-time First-Team All-Pro, two-time Second-Team All-Pro, and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s First-Team All-2000s Team. Hutchinson made an immediate impact upon arrival, starting all 16 games played and earning a spot on the 2001 NFL All-Rookie Team. He played at 6-foot-5, 313 pounds and was a Hall of Fame finalist in his first year of eligibility.

That’s a lot to live up to for Nelson, who like Hutchinson, was an All-American guard for a traditional college power. Hutchinson was the 17th overall pick in the 2001 NFL Draft after a solid collegiate career at Michigan. Nelson is listed at 6-foot-5, 329 pounds on his draft profile, so you can see where Kiper’s comparison is coming from.

For what it’s worth, Edmunds earned a Hall of Fame comp of his own from one draft insider, which should warm the hearts of Bears fans.

The Bears’ chances of landing a stud with the eighth pick are high (especially if multiple QBs go early). Conventional wisdom suggests the higher a team drafts, the better the team’s chances of choosing an impact talent (hell0). But as we continue to gather information about the draft’s top prospects, it’s becoming clearer that Nelson isn’t just another guard prospect. He could ultimately be a star, something the Bears could use on an offensive line tasked with protecting a developing quarterback and clearing space for a Pro Bowl running back.

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Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.