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2017 NFL Draft: Mel Kiper’s positional rankings for the Chicago Bears’ needs

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NCAA Football: The Citadel at North Carolina Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

I talked about it in my last podcast, the three and thirteen Chicago Bears have a number of needs on their current roster. Besides the obvious positions, quarterback, safety and corner, their depth could use a boost at just about every spot on the roster.

As of right now the Bears have seven picks in the 2017 NFL Draft, they have a 1st, 2nd, 3rd, two 4ths, a 5th and a 7th. General manager Ryan Pace will no doubt shore up a few of the Bears’ needs in free agency, but there’s no way he plug all their holes.

Even though Pace has shown a propensity to draft using a best player available philosophy, he will rank his draft board with need positions getting a little bump if the opportunity arises.

The original ESPN Draft Guru, Mel Kiper Jr., has dropped his Top 10 prospects at each position for 2017 NFL draft, and we’ll share with you guys his top 5 at a few of the Bears’ most neediest positions.

His rankings may include a few guys that have yet to declare for the draft, as the deadline is Monday, January 16th, but here’s how he has it so far.

One asterisk denotes a junior, and two asterisks denote a redshirt sophomore for the 2016 season.

QUARTERBACK

1. *Mitch Trubisky, North Carolina
2. **DeShone Kizer, Notre Dame
3. *Deshaun Watson, Clemson
4. *Patrick Mahomes, Texas Tech
5. *Brad Kaaya, Miami (Fla.)

I’m not sold on Trubisky. I know it’s cliche’ to discount quarterbacks with only one year of starting experience in college, but QBs rarely make a successful leap to the NFL unless they have multiple seasons of starting experience.

WIDE RECEIVER

1. *Mike Williams, Clemson
2. Corey Davis, Western Michigan
3. *John Ross, Washington
4. *Curtis Samuel, Ohio State
5. *JuJu Smith-Schuster, USC

The physical style of play from the 6’2”, 220 pound Smith-Schuster is fun to watch. If Alshon Jeffery leaves the Bears are suddenly very thin at this position.

TIGHT END

1. O.J. Howard, Alabama
2. *Bucky Hodges, Virginia Tech
3. Jake Butt, Michigan
4. **David Njoku, Miami (Fla.)
5. Jordan Leggett, Clemson

It was unfortunate that Butt was hurt in their Bowl game, but he should make a full recovery from his torn ACL.

OFFENSIVE TACKLE

1. *Cam Robinson, Alabama
2. *Ryan Ramczyk, Wisconsin
3. *Garett Bolles, Utah
4. Dion Dawkins, Temple
5. *Roderick Johnson, Florida State

While I think the Bears could get by with Bobby Massie and Charles Leno Jr. at tackle again in 2017, if the right guy fell into their laps they owe it to the offense to bring in some competition.

DEFENSIVE END

1. *Myles Garrett, Texas A&M
2. Jonathan Allen, Alabama
3. **Solomon Thomas, Stanford
4. Taco Charlton, Michigan
5. *Derek Barnett, Tennessee

I Think Garrett goes #1 to the Browns and I think the Bears end up with Allen at #3.

CORNERBACK

1. **Marshon Lattimore, Ohio State
2. *Teez Tabor, CB, Florida
3. *Quincy Wilson, Florida
4. **Marlon Humphrey, Alabama
5. Cordrea Tankersley, Clemson

The Bears could really use a starting caliber corner or two this offseason.

SAFETY

1. *Jamal Adams, LSU
2. **Jabrill Peppers, Michigan
3. **Malik Hooker, Ohio State
4. *Budda Baker, Washington
5. *Marcus Williams, Utah

I would not be mad if the Bears ended up with Adams or Hooker with the 3rd overall pick. While I loved what Peppers did at Michigan, I’m not sure his skill set is exactly what the Bears need at number three.

I just listed 35 prospects at 7 different positions for the 2017 draft, so odds are that a few of these guys will be available when the Bears draft in the 2nd, 3rd and possibly the 4th round.

Who are some of your favorites among the players listed above?