Last week we dissected the "Grade A" mock draft from ESPN's Todd McShay. It was another head-scratcher by McShay because he still hasn't received the memo that Kyle Long was back playing right guard. I liked his pick of Indiana offensive tackle Jason Spriggs in the 2nd round, but his reasoning that it allows Long to "bump back inside" is just lazy journalism.
This week we'll dissect another ESPN Insider mock draft.
The Grade A Mock is the brainchild of the original ESPN Draftnik, Mel Kiper Jr., and this week he takes it for a spin. The Grade A is basically him picking for each team a full three rounds, the player that he feels fits best in each slot. Since his entire mock is behind a pay wall, we can't reveal it in it's entirety, but we will touch on some highlights.
Here's what Kiper mocked to the Bears.
Round 1 (11): Sheldon Rankins, DT, Louisville
Round 2 (41): Joshua Garnett, G, Stanford
Round 3 (72): Joe Schobert, OLB, Wisconsin
Analysis: This is a tricky spot, because with the top three offensive lineman gone and better pure value at defensive line over cornerback, I feel like I have to go with the highly-disruptive interior presence. The Bears upgraded the D-line in last year's draft, but neither Eddie Goldman nor Will Sutton have the kind of juice Rankins does, and everybody gets better when we can rotate more and win battles up front deep into games. Garnett is an immediate starter at guard, and we get some pass-rushing help in Round 3 with the highly-productive Schobert. I'd like a cornerback, but the draft doesn't end at Round 3 and my defensive line is now better. Interceptions start with pressure, not coverage.
Kiper went with Rankins at 11th overall and he still had Florida corner Vernon Hargreaves, Alabama DE A'Shawn Robinson, Clemson DE/OLB Shaq Lawson and Georgia OLB Leonard Floyd available just to name a few.
I like Rankins as a prospect, I'm just not sure where he fits in Vic Fangio's 3-4 defense. At 6'1" he may not have the length that Fangio favors at defensive end. Most scouts peg him as a defensive tackle in a 4-3 or as a nose in a 3-4. He's "only" 299 pounds, but he has the strength to take on blockers as a 2 gap interior players, but he also has the quickness to penetrate.
Garnett has been a favorite of mine ever since I saw that clip of him destroying two defenders on one play. Earlier today in my Ten Thoughts I talked about rumors the Bears were looking to move on from left guard Matt Slauson, and I just don't see it happening. But if the Bears decide that BPA leads them to Garnett, they would have some interior options.
Schobert (6'1", 244) doesn't have the ideal build for a 3-4 OLB, but he's a high motor guy that could help at inside linebacker as well.
What are your thoughts on Kiper's Grade A mock haul for the Bears?