Expanding Your Draft Horizons, Free Agency Fallout, Green's New Deal in Chicago, and Other Bears Bullets

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Expanding Your Draft Horizons, Free Agency Fallout, Green’s New Deal in Chicago, and Other Bears Bullets

Chicago Bears

Nelson Velásquez’s grand slam was so rowdy you could hear it from down the road.

I’m almost at a loss for words in trying to describe the vibes I felt in person last night.

That was the type of Wrigley night you dream about during dark December nights.

  • The Bears using top 30 visits on offensive linemen Dawand Jones and Darnell Wright is encouraging for reasons beyond the obvious. Because, sure, we know Chicago’s football team needs offensive line help. And we see them being thorough as heck in their evaluation process. But seeing Jones and Wright pop up on their radar has me feeling good about the process because both of those players fall under the “is that guy really the Bears’ type?” umbrella. The way I see it, kicking the tires on Jones and Wright suggests the Bears aren’t going to pigeonhole themselves into a particular type of offensive lineman. That is probably a good thing. Keeping your mind (and options) open is a good way to go about building an offensive line.
  • Josh Schrock (NBC Sports Chicago) explores the Bears’ remaining free agents and concludes that the team is likely to move on from a whole bunch of them. We’ve already seen David Montgomery (Lions), Riley Reiff (Patriots), Matt Adams (Browns), Nicholas Morrow (Eagles), and Armon Watts (Steelers) fly the coop. But there are still 15 more members of the 2022 Bears hanging around in free agency. However, Schrock concludes that most of them are unlikely to return. Thanks for your efforts in successfully maneuvering the tank, gang.
  • Even still … there is one Bears free agent I’d like to see DeAndre Houston-Carson back in 2023. The special teams mainstay turns 30 on Thursday and could be that next Sherrick McManis type of player. But DHC saw his PT cut from a 50% snap share on defense in 2021 to 38% in 2022. There was also a slight trim in his special teams slice, getting just 66% of the snaps in that phase in 2023 after getting 72% in 2022. Maybe the Bears will find another big nickel safety/corner hybrid with special teams capabilities. But perhaps they should bring Houston-Carson back to hold down the fort until they do.
  • As for incoming free agents, there is a compensation update regarding the Bears’ signing of DL Rasheem Green:

  • In addition to being a bargain, the Green signing is a heady move. The Bears bring in a defensive lineman with starting experience on a short-term deal who can serve as a bridge to a long-term option selected in this upcoming draft. But if the Bears don’t find a suitable replacement in the draft who can take over during the season, I think we can be comfortable with Green plugging the gap for one year. It’s a win-win kind of signing. And if it doesn’t work out, they can go back to the well next year in search of another value add.
  • There wasn’t much the previous regime did well enough to deserve my congratulatory offerings, but that group was unable to unearth and develop a solid group of rotational defensive linemen. It would be nice to see this regime keep those vibes going.
  • I thought Kevin Fishbain (The Athletic) using Dane Brugler’s “The Beast” draft guide to shape the conversation of the Bears’ draft made for an interesting read. Getting a bigger picture look at the draft puts Chicago’s needs in perspective. But it also gives you an idea of how to best attack how to go about it. When will we see position runs? What spots are deep? Which ones are shallow? Picking the best player available is something we’d all love to see the Bears do, but how do you come to that conclusion when you’re trying to weigh so many variables at once? There are so many fascinating conversations to have ahead of the NFL Draft — which is just 15 days away.
  • On the scouting side of things, Greg Gabriel (who once served as the Bears’ Scouting Director) answers what we’ve been all wondering — do NFL teams really take the best player available? (Windy City Gridiron)
  • I’ll want to dive into this later:
  • A reminder that Aaron Rodgers is still employed by the Packers:

  • Eli has ideas on how the Bulls can beat the Raptors in tonight’s play-in game:

  • Watching someone rob dingers never gets old:

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Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.