By now our regular readers will know my stance of handing out immediate grades for the NFL Draft. It’s really a pointless exercise until they’ve played about three years in the NFL. But I completely understand the desire to grade asap. We like to read what drafniks think about the draft class of our favorite teams.
OMG we got an A!
Draft grades are great water cooler, comment section, and social media discussion fodder. If someone dares “disrespects” our team, we love to rally around the dis and
WTF he gave us a D?
Mel Kiper Jr. is the godfather of NFL Draft analysts. He basically created the job. Earlier today he took another look at the 2017 draft hauls of every team and gave the classes new grades. He does look at the undrafted crop of players for his new grades, but he’s big on “relative value” and he believes that “contributing to a winner is worth more than piling up reps for a bad team.” So that may have something to say for his Chicago Bears regrade.
Here’s the class in case you need a reminder.
1st round - Mitchell Trubisky, QB, North Carolina
2nd round - Adam Shaheen, TE, Ashland
4th round - Eddie Jackson, S, Alabama
4th round - Tarik Cohen, RB, North Carolina A&T
5th round - Jordan Morgan, G, Kutztown
And here’s what Kiper had to say...
Post-draft grade: C+
Here’s what I wrote about this class last year: “Chicago’s class is all about quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. The question is whether the current coaching staff will get to experience it.”
So yeah, John Fox is out, and Matt Nagy is in. That should mean a more modern offense for Trubisky, who ran the spread at North Carolina and has the athleticism to throw on the run and use run-pass-option concepts. That’s just not what he did in 2017, and it showed, as Trubisky had the second-worst Total QBR in the league (29.2), even behind DeShone Kizer. Trubisky had only seven touchdown passes to seven interceptions and completed just 59.4 percent of his passes in his 12 starts after taking over for Mike Glennon. There’s still a lot of unknown here -- we don’t know if Trubisky is the Bears’ quarterback of the future just yet.
He may have his reservations about Trubisky, but the Bears are all in. Just take a look at all the pieces they added this offseason — coaches and players — and how many of them will have a direct impact on Trubisky. If Trubisky becomes a star, the next time he regrades this class it’ll be much higher.
Safety Eddie Jackson and running back Tarik Cohen, both Day 3 picks, were the best players in this class. Jackson started every game and had 70 tackles, two interceptions and two defensive touchdowns, while Cohen averaged 4.3 yards per carry, snagged 53 catches and was an early fantasy darling, though he didn’t put up big numbers down the stretch. He did add a punt return touchdown.
Adam Shaheen is a Division II tight end who faced a steep learning curve, but he had three touchdown catches. It’s notable, though, that Chicago went out in free agency and got a No. 1 tight end in Trey Burton, so maybe they don’t think Shaheen is quite ready for a bigger workload.
Overall, there are some intriguing developmental players here, and Bears fans are hoping their quarterback takes a huge Year 2 leap in an offense designed around his strengths.
New grade: C+
The same grade?
Come on Mel #smh
Jackson, a day one starter, looks like the centerfield type the Bears have lacked for over a decade. And can you imagine what head coach Matt Nagy will do with Cohen?
Everyone, please repeat after me - Adam Shaheen does not play the same position as Trey Burton. Shaheen projects to a classic Y, while Burton is the Joker, or what the Bears call their U. Burton may occasionally line up as the in-line tight end, but it will all be dependent on match-ups.
If Morgan, who missed his entire rookie year, can develop into a serviceable back-up, this class will get another boost.
Let us know your Bears 2017 Draft regrade in the comment section.