Bears Are Reportedly Using a Top-30 Visit on Ohio State’s Dawand Jones
Another day, another offensive lineman prospect with a connection to the Chicago Bears.
GM Ryan Poles and his staff have been thorough in researching offensive linemen ahead of the draft. And with 16 days left until they go on the clock with their first-round pick, the mission to unearth everything possible about all the top prospects continues. Today, we’re adding Ohio State right tackle Dawand Jones to the list.
The Draft Network’s Ryan Fowler has the scoop:
Offensive linemen were all the rage during Senior Bowl week. And Jones was one of the standout performers who caught our eye. Jones made one heck of an impression throughout the week because, let’s face it, there is just something about watching an offensive lineman wreck opponents that brings out a special kind of joy in football watchers. The OSU standout became many draft observers’ O-line crush due to his efforts at the Senior Bowl. So much so that some draftniks were moving him into the first round. Some of those conversations have seemed to cool off, but that shouldn’t diminish Jones’ prospect shine.
Jones is big, long, and skilled. Plus, he has experience playing at a high level. The Ohio State product was a first-team All-American in 2022 by CBS Sports. And he also earned second-team All-Big Ten recognition in each of his last two years with the Buckeyes. The arrow is pointing up for Jones, who could be a force at the next level. Seeing a report of the Bears bringing him in piques my interest because of their obvious need for a right tackle. Not addressing that position in free agency leaves Chicago looking like it will select a lineman early in the draft. In fact, there is a growing belief the Bears will address needs in the trenches with early picks. Considering how they plugged other holes via trade (WR) and free agency (LB, G), using the draft to round out the key additions makes sense.
For all the chatter surrounding Orlando Brown Jr.’s size and mobility limitations in this scheme, seeing the Bears use a top 30 visit on Tennessee’s Darnell Wright (6-5, 333 pounds) and are reportedly set to use one on Jones (6-8, 374 pounds) is a bit of a head-scratcher. Then again, there is an apples vs. oranges discussion to be had here. And by that I mean both are fruits, but have different flavor profiles. Brown, Wright, and Jones are larger than life offensive linemen. That much they have in common. But their differences make them stand out from one another. Ultimately, seeing the Bears’ interest in Wright and Jones for top 30 visits should remind us not to check someone off the list just because they don’t have a particular look.
After all, maybe the Bears see better fits for those types of players on rookie-scale deals. Or perhaps they see them as more valuable than Brown on a deal that pays him $16 million per year. Whatever it is, I like how this front office casts a wide net when it comes to offensive line prospects. I wonder who’s next on their list…