Cornerback is, in my opinion, the 4th most pressing need for the Bears, which is why this week's WCG Draft Board will focus on the 2011 corner back prospects. Charles Tillman turned in a solid year at corner and should have gotten some consideration for the Pro Bowl. He's pretty much a lock to start at either RCB or LCB next season. Who will be playing on the other side of him is a mystery. While Tim Jennings had his highs, he most certainly had plenty of lows, most notably the NFC Championship game. Zachary Bowman was supposed to be the #1 corner this season, but his lack of recognition hurt him in week 3 and he was benched for Tim Jennings. Joshua Moore is a player I am really high on for next year because he's touted as a very good man to man corner, but just needs to bulk up more.
The Bears have a glaring hole at CB which is why we're focusing on the top 15 prospects entering this year's draft.
#1 Patrick Peterson, LSU- Unless he seriously messes up the interviews or suffers a significant injury leading up to his pro day workouts, we won't have a shot at the best corner back in the draft. Most mock drafts have him going in the top 5, and at worst he won't slip past 7. Highlights
#2 Prince Amukamara, Nebraska- Prince is the closest thing to resemble Namdi Asomagah. He is a true shutdown corner because of his ability to take away a whole side of the field. Highlights
#3 Brandon Harris, Miami- A great athlete at the CB position, Harris reminds me a lot of Packers corner Tramon Williams. I would like to see him get a little stronger so he can develop into a complete CB at the next level. Highlights
#4 Aaron Williams, Texas- I waffle at who should be after Brandon Harris between Aaron Williams, Jimmy Smith, and his teammate Curtis Brown. I put Williams #4 because he's the most tremendous athlete of the 3. He is really good in man coverage and also has good range in zone coverage. Highlights
#5 Jimmy Smith, Colorado- Big corner that's not afraid to come down and mix it up. Not much of the athlete like Williams; just does his job - and does it very well I might add. Highlights
#6 Rashad Carmichael, Virgina Tech- A lot of mocks have Curtis Brown as the first corner after the obvious 5, but not me. Rashad Carmichael's physical talent put him here at #6. Has good ball skills, physicality, and can play man. He's definitely a guy the Bears should look at in the 2nd round. Highlights
#7 Curtis Brown, Texas- Small corner, but is quick and fast enough to play man coverage. Because of his slim build, he will have trouble trying to press big receivers at the next level.
#8 Ras-I Dowing, Virginia- Really don't know why most draft experts and mocks soured on Dowing. Dowing is a solid man to man defensive back, very physical, with good ball skills. If he is available with the Bears 2nd pick or even their 3rd round pick, it would be a steal. Highlights
#9 Kendrick Burney, North Carolina- Burney is a very good instinct player which helps him overcome his size. Mike Mayock has compared him to Brandon Flowers, which is pretty high praise. Highlights
#10 Johnny Patrick, Louisville- Very underrated (or at least to me he's underrated). Patrick is a decent sized corner with solid man coverage skills. Reminds me a lot of last year's pick Joshua Moore, but is a little stronger. Highlights
#11 Brandon Burton, Utah- Not really a physical corner, as he can get swallowed up in the run game. Coverage-wise he is pretty good and has the potential to get even better with the right coaching. Highlights
#12 Devon House, New Mexico- Most likely a project because he's small at 178 lbs, but he does have the ball and cover skills to play on the outside.
#13 DeMarcus Van Dyke, Miami- Just like House, Van Dyke has to beef up but he flashed potential at the senior bowl. Not likely to come in right away and play, and I would suggest that he develops behind a solid veteran starter for a couple years.
#14 Shareece Wright, USC- Another guy that benefited from the Senior Bowl, Wright's stock might have shot up to the 3rd round with an impressive performance.
#15 Jalil Brown, Colorado- Brown is the sleeper of this year's corner prospects. The fact that he was targeted less because of Jimmy Smith on the other side and still had a break out season speaks volumes.
Mock CB pick for the Bears: Rashad Carmichael, Virginia Tech
I don't see the Bears going CB in the 1st round, but I can see them going for one in the 2nd which is why I chose Carmichael. Carmichael would be an ideal fit for Lovie's Tampa-2 scheme because he's really physical which is what you want in that scheme out of your corner. He also is pretty good at man to man coverage which I notice Lovie and Marinelli playing more of towards the end of the season.