One of college football’s best quarterbacks is making the jump to the pros. Ohio State’s CJ Stroud is taking his talents to the NFL, declaring for the 2023 NFL Draft. And that’s very good news for the Chicago Bears.
On the one hand, it isn’t a surprise that CJ Stroud has declared for the 2023 NFL Draft. But there definitely were rumors that he was in line to get a boatload of NIL money to play another year with the Buckeyes.
And while it’s difficult to imagine a college QB passing up the type of money he could get from his rookie deal as a first-round pick, I could’ve seen Stroud wanting one more crack at beating Michigan (not to mention taking another shot at a national championship). If following the NFL and college football in recent years has taught me anything, it’s that weird and unexpected stuff can happen at any time.
It would’ve been huge news had Stroud stuck around. Nevertheless, it is a big deal that he is going pro. The 2023 NFL Draft now has two top-tier talents that QB-needy teams will be thirsting over possibly drafting in April. And with the Bears owning the top pick, they could dangle it to a team that wants to take Stroud, Alabama’s Bryce Young, or even Kentucky’s Will Levis. Don’t come rushing all at once, folks. Bears GM Ryan Poles will be taking meetings with any and all interested parties soon enough.