We interrupt the free agent frenzy to bring you some NFL Draft chatter...
Thanks to the folks over at Fanspeak, we have access to their wonderful On The Clock Draft Simulator again this year. It's a fun tool to help us go through the draft process and learn about some potential prospects for the Chicago Bears.
Since the Bears have filled a few needs in free agency, and since general manager Ryan Pace mentioned he leans towards the draft-the-best-player-available philosophy, I figured I'd do this mock with the same BPA line of thinking.
Here were my couple rules I followed in this mock. Number one, even though the Premium version of Fanspeak's simulator allows trades, I didn't make any for this mock draft. Secondly, when drafting BPA, I did take into consideration players I previously drafted. So if I already took a wide out, I wouldn't double up with another. In instances where BPA was a duplicate position, I simply moved down the board to the next player.
Fanspeak gives you access to a few draft boards, but I decided to stick with their's this time out. To see my entire mock draft you can click here.
Keep in mind, I stayed true to the BPA philosophy and these 6 players are not necessarily the specific picks I think the Bears will take, but you never can tell.
First Round - Pick 7: Kevin White, Wide Receiver, West Virginia
When the Chicago Bears traded away starting wide receiver Brandon Marshall, it opened up a starting spot opposite Alshon Jeffery. Signing Eddie Royal took care of the #3 (slot) receiver spot, but adding more talent to offensive coordinator Adam Gase's offense could be a possibility. Enter Kevin White.
White would be an immediate starter for the Bears and at 6'3", 215, with a 4.35 forty, he has the size and speed to be a difference maker at the next level. He excels at going up and getting it, he has good stop and start quickness and he has good hands. In 13 games at WVU last year, White had 109 receptions for 1,447 yards and 10 TDs.
Second Round - Pick 39: Eddie Goldman, Defensive Line, Florida State
Goldman could play the nose in Chicago's 3-4 D or he could give them some reps at defensive end. His pass rushing needs some refining, but at 6'4", 336 pounds, he definitely has NFL size. Some scouts feel Goldman is a first round talent, so getting him in the 2nd could be considered a steal.
Third Round - Pick 71: Todd Gurley, Running Back, Georgia
I really don't see Gurley lasting to the 3rd round, but stranger things have happened in the NFL Draft. Gurley is coming off a torn ACL in 2014, so teams may flag him for health concerns. When healthy he has a combination of speed and power that would make him an instant starter for most teams. If the Bears do take him, they could split carries with Matt Forte, then allow Forte to walk as a free agent after the 2015 season.
Fourth Round - Pick 103: Jeff Heuerman, Tight End, Ohio State
The way the draft board fell, there were a few wide outs and running backs listed as BPA, so I dropped down to the next available BPA and it just so happened to be a need position for the Bears. Heuerman is an athletic 6'5", 254 pounder that could be used in a variety of ways for an offense. He labored through his senior year at Ohio State, making 14 starts, after having foot surgery in March of 2014. One scout said he could be the top senior TE prospect in the draft and that he could thrive in the pros.
In Denver, Adam Gase's offense didn't use a fullback, instead they often went with a double tight end look. At some point the Bears will need to add to the position group and drafting a guy is a possibility.
Fifth Round - Pick 134: Jamil Douglas, Guard, Arizona State
Scouts feel Douglas is best suited for a zone blocking scheme, and as luck would have it, the Bears will be running some zone stuff under the new coaching staff. Douglas (6'4", 304) was primarily a left guard in college, but he has played every position except center during his time at Arizona State.
Sixth Round - Pick 167: Nick Marshall, Cornerback, Auburn
In the last two years at Auburn, Marshall completed 60% of his passes for 4,508 yards, with 34 touchdowns to 13 interceptions. He added 1,866 rushing yards with 23 TDs, but his NFL future doesn't seem to be as a quarterback. He's willing to do anything at the next level, but many scouts see him at corner.
He has good size (6'1", 207) and athleticism for CB, but he may need to make himself noticed on special teams while he learns the intricacies of his new position.
Now it's your turn to sound off, what do you think of this BPA type draft?