Feb 27, 2012; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini defensive lineman Whitney Mercilus does the shuttle run during the NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE
We know we've been very mock draft-centric around here the last week, but with the big free agent fishes all locked up, the next big NFL event is the draft. Make sure you're checking out Sam's Prospecting for Gold series and all the selections from our member mock draft by checking out the WCG NFL Draft section.
This week the mock draft we're dissecting is the Don Banks mock from Sports Illustrated. SI has the Bears going with a pick that is quickly becoming the consensus after they acquired Brandon Marshall. Many experts believe the Bears will now go defense with pick #19, and Banks has the Bears plucking Whitney Mercilus, defensive end, Illinois.
This mock is slightly different than the one we looked at last week. That mock had the Bears going with Mercilus, but Norte Dame wide out Michael Floyd was still on the board. This time out, Floyd is gone at 16 to the Jets, but the next 5 picks in his mock could all be good fits with the Bears too. Here's what he had to say about his Bears selection:
With the Brandon Marshall trade getting Jay Cutler the requisite No. 1 receiver, the Bears can take whomever catches their fancy. A cornerback like Stephon Gilmore makes sense, or maybe another offensive tackle for new coordinator Mike Tice to plug into the lineup (Jonathan Martin or Mike Adams?). But Chicago could also use some pass rush help for Julius Peppers, and Whitney, the one-year wonder who starred for the homestate Illini last season, might be hard to resist.
I'm on board with this selection. I think he has tremendous upside, and he fits a couple key draft points. He fills a need, and he could be considered the best player available.
Check out his mock draft and let us know if this is the way you would pick...