Grading The Draft

Here is what some prominent sites are saying about the Bears 2008 draft.

ESPN (Kiper):

GRADE: B
Chris Williams is the left tackle the Bears need from a pass-protection standpoint, and he'll start as a rookie. Matt Forte is a hard-nosed running back. He's not flashy, but he's elusive. I like what the Bears did on Day 2, starting with Vanderbilt WR Earl Bennett, who reminds me of Hines Ward. Arkansas DT Marcus Harrison lasted until the third round because of some off-field concerns, and Nebraska's Zack Bowman is a big corner who was once projected as a first-round pick, before he suffered injuries to both knees. LSU safety Craig Steltz -- who reminds me of former Bear Doug Plank -- will be a solid special teams player and could push for a starting job. With his height, Arkansas WR Marcus Monk could be a red zone threat and he qualifies as a very good seventh-round pick. He looked like a second-rounder after his junior year, and ran a 4.42 in the 40-yard dash, which is excellent for a 6-foot-4, 220-pound receiver. Tight end Kellen Davis has tremendous athletic ability but he needs to be more consistent.

FOX Sports:

The Bears may have been tempted to replace departed receiver Bernard Berrian in the first round, but instead may have found their slot receiver in Vanderbilt's Earl Bennett in the third round. Bennett is the first SEC receiver to have 75 receptions for three straight seasons. Top pick Chris Williams has the ability and feet to be a starting left tackle — he allowed only two sacks over a two-year period and almost 1,600 plays. The Bears allowed 43 sacks last season. Williams dominated most drills at the Senior Bowl. Arkansas DT Marcus Harrison was a need, and he played last season on a tender knee that had surgery in the spring. Harrison has first-round talent, but seventh-round character. LSU safety Craig Steltz will remind older Bears fans of Gary Fencik with his tremendous run support. Tulane RB Matt Forte was a need, considering the injury history of Cedric Benson. Grade: A

CBS Sportsline:

Best pick: Third-round pick Marcus Harrison will become a force in the middle of their defense. Some off-field issues prevented him from being a higher selection. Questionable move: Taking tackle Chris Williams with the 14th pick in the first round came after several teams took him off their boards for medical reasons (back). Chicago better hope that doesn't become a problem. Second-day gem: I love tight end Kellen Davis, whom the Bears selected in the fifth round. He's a strong, athletic player. Overall grade: B+. Aside from the questions about Williams, they did a nice job. Harrison will make this draft.
Overall everybody seems to think we did a good job and I'd probably agree, but Peter King points out the most obvious reason why fans and experts would have a hard time understanding the Bears draft plan.
The Bears had 12 draft choices this year. No quarterback picked. Chicago had nine draft choices in 2007. No quarterback picked. Chicago had seven draft choices in 2006. Three years with a quarterback need, 28 draft choices, and never a passer picked. This isn't odd. It's negligent. The thing that drives me craziest about the draft is when you see a team with talent not doing enough to bolster the most important position on the field, over and over and over again. With Chad Henne, who absolutely should have been a first-rounder, and solid guy Brian Brohm on the board, the Bears passed on both and picked a very productive running back from Tulane, Matt Forte. There's a slight chance -- maybe 20 or 25 percent, I'd say -- that the Bears have their quarterback of the future on the roster in either Rex Grossman or Kyle Orton. Maybe. But whether you believe it or not, you have to admit it's silly not to backstop the most important position in sports. What is it about the undying love of Grossman that makes Chicago unable or unwilling to turn the page?
Now it is your turn. How did the Bears do?
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