The NFL Draft is hours away, but the Chicago Bears can already claim their first-round selection was a good one:
🚨 SPOILER ALERT 🚨
We already made our 2019 first round pick. Hope you like him. pic.twitter.com/tXjlcgDC79
— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) April 25, 2019
The Chicago Bears didn’t move up or down in the first round, but still landed one of the draft’s best defensive prospect. So let’s take some time to get to know the next great Bears linebacker.
THE PICK (ROUND 1, PICK 24)
- Name: Khalil Mack
- College: Buffalo
- Position: Edge defender
- Age: 28
- Height, weight, hand size, arms: 6-foot-3, 252 pounds
NEED TO KNOW
- 2018 stats: 14 games, 12.5 sacks, 10 tackles-for-loss, 18 quarterback hits, 6 forced fumbles, 2 recovered fumbles, 1 interception, 1 defensive touchdown
- 2018 accomplishments: First-Team All-Pro, Pro Bowl, Defensive Player of the Month (September 2018)
- Elite pass-rush ability. Mack has all the tools (and the proper toolbox) of a high-end pass-rusher. He uses power, speed, and then combines the two to make offensive linemen attempting to block them look silly.
- Top-notch athleticism. Not only is Mack toolsy, he possesses the athletic ability to make those tools jump off the page. Mack can make plays from one sideline to another and has coverage range, just in case the defensive coordinator wants to get fancy and toss in a wrinkle that can throw off an opposing offense.
- High football IQ and instincts. There are times when it feels like Mack knows what play is coming and is there before a ball-carrier gets to the spot. And there are occasions when it feels like Mack knows he needs to make a play and just does it. Mack’s ability to come up with a strip-sack in crunch time is a thing of beauty
WHERE MACK FITS
Have you seen this defense? Mack can fit wherever he pleases. Mack was a certified bad-ass in 2018 as he racked up 12.5 sacks, 18 quarterback hits, 10 tackles-for-loss, 6 forced fumbles (2 recoveries), and one pick-six. Mack earned the second-highest grade among edge rushers at Pro Football Focus (90.7) and was one of a handful of Bears defenders to check in on PFF’s list of 101 best players. If there was something on the defensive side of the ball to be done in 2018, Mack did it … and in style.