There is a Buzz Building Around Bears Rookie Cornerback Kyler Gordon
Might as well get the obvious disclaimers out of the way while we can.
It’s only May. And we have just a handful of rookie minicamp practices and OTAs under our belts. But there is a particular buzz surrounding Chicago Bears rookie cornerback Kyler Gordon. And it has my attention.
Gordon, who was Ryan Poles’ first-ever draft pick as Bears general manager, has made quite an impression on first-year head coach Matt Eberflus. The quote from Eberflus, via NBC Sports Chicago’s Josh Schrock, is undoubtedly an attention-grabber:
“Kyler’s been lighting it up the last two days. I’ll just tell you that. The guy’s got tremendous ball skills. He’s been playing the defense the right way, and we’re very impressed with him. I’ll just tell you that. And he’s doing a good job the first two days. We’ll see where it goes. He’s young. He’s got a lot to learn, but we’re excited about where he is with his ball-hawking skills. No question.”
There are some “hope springs eternal” vibes emanating from Eberflus’ words. But dreaming on Gordon’s potential comes from a place of optimism rooted in the skills he already possesses.
Gordon had a decorated college career at Washington, a school known for developing pro-level defensive backs. He picked up All-Pac 12 honors in 2019 (honorable mention), 2020 (another honorable mention), and 2021 (first-team) to close out his college days. And leading up to the 2022 NFL Draft, Gordon was one of the highest-rated cornerbacks in his class. His selection by the Bears might’ve come as a surprise to those expecting Chicago to take a receiver. But GM Ryan Poles was able to use the 39th pick to grab the 36th overall prospect on The Athletic’s consensus ranking based on 82 draft big boards. That’s a substantial value for a player whose head coach seems to be digging already.
Here’s to Gordon stacking those practices in May and June, teasing those skills during training camp and preseason games that are coming this summer, and eventually unleashing them on the NFL when the season begins in September. Eberflus is right, topping out that Gordon is young with plenty of growth and learning in his future. But the skills are tantalizing. And there is reason to be optimistic about Gordon’s future as a potential CB1 down the line.