So far all the mock drafts we've dissected have had the Bears going defensive end, wide receiver, or offensive line. Three positions of obvious need for the Bears, and three positions that have a plethora of options available at #19. We also saw our very own member mock draft go with a linebacker at #19, another position of need for an aging Bears defense. With the active free agency that Phil Emery has engineered, the Bears should be in position to go in a multitude of directions come draft day. And the latest Mock from Russ Lande of the Sporting News has them going with a tight end.
The Bears acquired Brandon Marshall to help outside and now they grab Fleener, whose speed and receiving skills will give Cutler another big-play target.
Fleener is without question the top TE in the draft. He's a 6'6", 247 pounds athlete that has good hands and runs good routes. He's an intelligent football player that played in a pro style offense at Stanford and could easily step in from day one and be a contributor if not a starter for the Bears. In college his versatility allowed him to be lined up not only as an inline TE, but also at H-Back and split out wide.
He didn't run at the NFL Combine because he was still recovering from a high ankle sprain, but his 27 reps on the bench was interesting as many of the scouting reports listed his strength as a weakness. He's a willing blocker, that is technically sound when asked to seal the edge. He's not a bruiser, but he knows his job in the run game, and is further along in that aspect of his skill set than past tight ends the Bears have drafted recently.
At the Stanford Pro Day he was 100% and he competed in the full slate of events. From cbssports.com;
Multiple reports had the Joliet Catholic graduate timed at 4.45 seconds in the 40 with a breeze at his back. Into the wind, it was 4.51. Those times typically belong to wide receivers and defensive backs. He supplemented that speed with a 37-inch vertical jump and a 9-foot-8 broad jump, both excellent as well.
What do you think Bears fans? Take a look at the mock draft from Lande and let us know if Fleener is the choice you would make with who he still has available.