After trading Jordan Howard to the Philadelphia Eagles, the Chicago Bears have a need to fill at running back, but don’t have a pick to address that need until the third round of the upcoming draft. GASP!
Have no fear, my friends. The Athletic’s Dane Brugler has some good news to share as he notes that the third-round is “the sweet spot” for running backs. Hey! The Bears won’t be on the clock until the third round. Perfect. Let’s talk shop.
Brugler shared his top-25 running back prospect rankings, and it’s worth pointing out that four of his six highest-graded backs project to be third-rounders. Alabama’s tandem of Josh Jacobs and Damien Harris figure to be off the board in the first two rounds, but Devin Singletary (Florida Atlantic), David Montgomery (Iowa State), Miles Sanders (Penn State), and Darrell Henderson (Memphis) all have third-round grades in Brugler’s eyes. Dive deeper and you’ll see that Justice Hill (Oklahoma State) and Trayveon Williams (Texas A&M) also have 3rd-4th Round Grades.
Bottom line: That’s eight of the top-10 backs on Brugler’s board who figure to be available when the Bears go on the clock.
Chicago played host to visits from Singletary and Williams on visits in March. The Bears also received a visit from Sanders, who’s been mocked to the team in various pre-draft run-throughs and was someone the team met with during the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. Speaking of the Combine, it was a gold-mine for running back meetings for the Bears, as they also met with (among many, many others) Bryce Love (Stanford) and Benny Snell (Kentucky), who rank 13th and 16th on Brugler’s running backs board. The team has also checked in (or scheduled to check in) with visits to Ryquell Armstead (Temple) and Mike Weber (Ohio State), Brugler’s No. 11 and No. 17 running backs.
Are you a highly-rated running back eligible for the 2019 NFL Draft? If so, the Bears have probably kicked the tires on you or will do so in short order.
One simply couldn’t ignore the Bears’ reported meetings with this draft class’ top running back prospects and it will be impossible to do so now that it’s a position of need for the Bears. But if you were worried about finding Howard’s replacement, then Brugler’s rankings and the Bears’ connection to the backs at the top of the board should be re-assuring. Chicago is well-positioned to land a running back with considerable upside in the upcoming draft. Embrace change and the potential for something great to come later this month.