Bears Draft Thoughts: Post-Combine Mocks, Love For Kmet, QB Movement, More

The NFL Scouting Combine is totally behind us, which means the post-Combine draft nuggets are rolling in. Let’s discuss!

  • Adam Hoge (WGN Radio) rolled out his second mock draft, which includes a pair of familiar names going to the Bears in the second round. As will be the case with many coming mocks, Hoge has the Bears taking Notre Dame tight end Cole Kmet with one of their two picks. The need is obvious. The fit is even more obvious. And while Chicago could go elsewhere with their first second-round pick should they choose to be adventurous in free agency, Kmet’s floor and upside would still make him a fit for that spot.
  • The other second-rounder Hoge pegs for the Bears is Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts. In case you missed it, I fessed up to having a huge prospect crush on Hurts. ALL OF THE HEARTEYES EMOJIS! The guy checks a lot of boxes for me: Experienced collegiate quarterback? Check. A winner for two prestigious college football powerhouses? Yep. Heisman Trophy finalist? Mhmm. What’s not to love? Or as Hoge puts it: “He’s nothing but a winner with a high-character background, competitive work ethic and outstanding football IQ. In some ways, this feels like a do-over on passing on Deshaun Watson.” Seriously … where do I sign up?
  • I would go as far as suggesting to strike up a deal with the Chiefs for pick No. 32 in the first round. Dial up Andy Reid, tell him you’ll package one of the second-round picks and future considerations to get a deal done to draft Hurts with that slot, thus getting the opportunity to net the fifth-year option on a rookie quarterback’s deal. It’s wild to even think about that as a possibility, but Bears GM Ryan Pace has pulled off crazier stunts before.
  • And before you say it’s unrealistic, remember that the Ravens sent picks Nos. 52 and 125 in the 2018 NFL Draft *PLUS* a second-rounder in 2019 to get the Eagles’ Nos. 32 and 132 picks in order to select Lamar Jackson. Again … not totally crazy.
  • Fittingly enough, Hoge’s mock draft has the Bears drafting Lamar Jackson in the fifth round. No, not *THAT* one. The one who played cornerback at Nebraska. Check out Hoge’s other mock picks, because he addresses needs across the board.
  • Eric Edholm (Yahoo! Sports) doesn’t have the Bears taking a quarterback with either of their second-round picks, but he does have them taking a pair of QB-friendly options. Like Hoge, Edholm sends Kmet to the Bears — but with the 50th pick, not the 43rd overall selection. With their earlier pick, Edholm has the Bears taking Louisiana-Lafayette offensive lineman Robert Hunt. “Is this too high for Hunt? Perhaps,” writes Edholm. “But GM Ryan Pace has never seemed to let that slow him down in the past.” GULP!
  • But hey, I like the idea of drafting an offensive lineman with one of those two second-round picks. Edholm writes Hunt “seeks to bury people” as a mauler on the front lines and added the Bears don’t have enough of those types of blockers. No argument here. Chicago could use some nasty men up front.
  • Chris Pflum of SB Nation’s Big Blue Review has a prospect report for Hunt, who played tackle in college, but projects to be an interior lineman. There are some red flags (both medical due to a groin injury suffered in 2019 and there is a reference to an arrest in 2017) that need to be checked out before I get fully on board with Hunt, but it’s a new name to keep in mind.
  • Speaking of interior offensive linemen, Ben Linsey (PFF) names Ohio State guard Jonah Jackson as the best post-Combine fit for the Bears. And why not? Jackson is PFF’s second-highest graded interior offensive line prospect and 38th overall. Versatility is listed as a strength and would be a logical choice to be a second-round selection to be a plug-and-play guy as a rookie.
  • Dane Brugler (The Athletic) has the 4.0 mock draft update. It is a three-round mock. Has the Bears taking Lenoir-Rhyne safety Kyle Dugger (43rd overall) and Kmet (50th) with their second-round picks.
  • Choosing Kmet makes sense, too. Especially if the Bears don’t dive into the deep end of the free agency pool to address their needs for a “U” tight end. But by picking Kmet, the Bears pass on players I’ve had my eyes on at other positions who go shortly after the team is mocked to select Kmet. Among them: Jeremy Chinn (safety, Southern Illinois), Jaylon Johnson (cornerback, Utah), Antoine Winfield (safety, Minnesota), Laviska Shenault (wide receiver, Colorado), Jacob Eason (quarterback, Washington), and K.J. Hamler (wide receiver, Penn State).
  • By picking Dugger, the Bears pass on the opportunity to draft quarterback Jake Fromm and others who could be theoretical fits. Based on team needs right now, one can make a case for someone like Isaiah Wilson (offensive tackle, Georgia), Jeff Gladney (cornerback, TCU), Loyd Cushenberry (interior offensive lineman, LSU), or Josh Uche (edge rusher, Michigan). But Dugger has the build of a solid complimentary safety who can play next to Eddie Jackson and showed off enough athleticism at the Combine to solidify his place as a second-round pick.
  • The pick that caused me the most angst in Brugler’s draft? The Raiders using the 81st pick (acquired from the Bears as part of the Khalil Mack trade) to draft Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts. Grumble.
  • Hmmm …
  • Luke Easterling’s first-round mock has five quarterbacks going in his latest at Draft Wire. That’s a significant amount of quarterback movement, to be sure. Joe Burrow (LSU) goes first overall to the Bengals, but he is joined in the first round of this particular mock draft by Tua Tagovailoa (Alabama), Justin Herbert (Oregon), Jordan Love (Utah State), and Jacob Eason (Washington). There’s trade movement in Easterling’s mock, so you should check out how he sees some things you would not have expected.
  • Other analysts who have a one-round mock: Cynthia Frelund (NFL.com), Daniel Jeremiah (NFL.com), Todd McShay (ESPN), Will Brinson (CBS Sports), John Clayton (Washington Post), and Kevin Hanson (SI.com).
  • Take your pick, Bears fan:
  • I know who my guys are …
  • … but it wasn’t as easy as you might think for me.
  • written by

    Luis C. Medina, who you can find on Twitter at lcm1986, has been covering the Chicago Bears at Bleacher Nation since 2017. Since then, he has written about 3 head coaches, 5 play-callers, and 11 starting quarterbacks. Previously, Luis wrote about the Cubs and MLB at BN (2015-16) and worked in the Chicago Tribune sports department (2011-16). He also co-hosted a Cubs postgame show, Outside the Ivy, in 2019.

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