As it turns out, Brett and I are shot buddies. Getting our COVID-19 vaccines at nearly the same time in different places and time zones is quite the quirk. Does this make us a dyad in the Force? Maybe. Perhaps JJ Abrams can give us an answer down the line (Michael: But hopefully not him, specifically).
Anyway, there’s a new mass vaccination site coming next to Wrigley Field. And with attendance capacities of sporting events being tied to vaccination levels in the state, we’ll continue to monitor this stuff as we go on. I can’t wait to be back at a ballgame again.
• Trust me, I understand the sentiment that just because the Bears are talking to these quarterbacks doesn’t necessarily tip their hand on interest come Draft night. After all, GM Ryan Pace has taken just one quarterback after saying in his opening press conference that he would like to take one every year. Seven years. Just one quarterback. Nevertheless, the trend of being in on draft-eligible QB prospects is different than it has been in the past. And *THAT* is what makes what’s happening now interesting.
• So, yeah, it’s noteworthy that the Bears are out in full force for the top quarterback draft prospects. They’ve been publicly connected to seeing Trey Lance, Mac Jones, Kellen Mond, and Davis Mills at their respective Pro Days. We also know they were in attendance to see throwing showcases featuring Justin Fields and Zach Wilson. None of this means they’ll get their hands on any of these players. But doing the due diligence is a step in the right direction after not doing it well in 2017 and seemingly not being into doing so (at least, not publicly) between 2018-2020.
• And if history is an indication of the future, we know that GM Ryan Pace gets obsessive over certain positions. In the past, we’ve seen him go overboard on trying to fix the kicker, tight end, receiver, cornerback, and safety spots by bringing in multiple options in an offseason. It sure looks like he’s doing that now with quarterbacks.
• I want to take a deeper dive into Davis Mills, but for the moment, I’m digging this bit of perspective from ESPN analyst Matt Bowen:
#Stanford QB Davis Mills (6-foot-4, 217) —
— Matt Bowen (@MattBowen41) March 30, 2021
• It’s tough to judge Mills. He has limited playing experience, for starters. Also, the buzz he is receiving right now from draft circles reminds me of last year’s pre-draft hype for Florida International’s James Morgan. The difference between Mills, Morgan, and any number of gassed-up mid-round QB prospects is the pedigree. Five-star recruit status isn’t handed out willy-nilly. So with that in mind, Mills might be a post-hype sleeper candidate who hasn’t even begun scratching at his potential because of his playing limitations.
• On the other end of the spectrum, the highly-accomplished (albeit, in just one season) Mac Jones makes it look easy. The ball looks good coming out of his hand:
• Is Mac Jones why Ryan Pace was straight cheesin’ in the video below?
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 30, 2021
• You can swap out “49ers” for any of the league’s other 31 teams based on this assessment:
THIS is why @macjones_10 is the PERFECT fit for @49ers
It’s also something every young QB and Coach should strive to learn and study! @espnnfl@laurarutledge with the POINT OUT pic.twitter.com/J4C08ZTi8v
— Dan Orlovsky (@danorlovsky7) March 30, 2021
• More from Bowen, this time on Justin Fields:
Pro Day workout this afternoon for #OhioState QB Justin Fields.
Here’s my draft report — based on tape study only. pic.twitter.com/rxzdOckQyD
— Matt Bowen (@MattBowen41) March 30, 2021
• An astute observation regarding another team that fumbled the bag in the 2017 NFL Draft:
Bears took massive heat for drafting Trubisky over Mahomes and Watson but the 49ers, who had just as big of a need at QB, used their 3rd overall pick on bust Solomon Thomas. [They also had another late 1st that year that is no longer on the team]
They should get criticize for it
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) March 30, 2021
• Yeah, yeah, yeah … I know the 49ers got to a Super Bowl. And that’s a main reason as to why they don’t take the same heat the Bears do. But in the interest of fairness, it’s important to keep in perspective how whiffing on the quarterback can set a team back.
• The difference between the Bears and Niners has been asset management. San Francisco isn’t in a place where it is robbing Peter to pay Paul, taking money from the future by re-structuring deal to fund the present. And the 49ers aren’t cutting stud defensive players for the sake of creating cap flexibility. Asset management is important, more so when you goof on the quarterback selection.
• Sometimes, I find myself frustrated about how the Bears have pieces to build around on offense but struggle to put it together like someone who’s clueless with a puzzle. One of those pieces is David Montgomery, a running back with skill, tackle-breaking ability, and a non-stop motor:
Cleat control over Speed. pic.twitter.com/JW8kUopMWR
— Footwork King (@Footwork_King2) March 31, 2021
• Akiem Hicks retweeted this onto the timeline last night:
— Bruce Arians (@BruceArians) March 30, 2021
• And with that, comes a reminder that the Bears chose to hire Marc Trestman over THIS GUY. But more than that, I’m reminded that the power structure that made this decision is still in charge. Yikes!