We can add Arden Key to the list of prospects the Chicago Bears plan to meet with before the 2018 NFL Draft. The Bears have a need for pass rushing outside linebackers, and LSU’s Key is drawing a lot of interest according to NFL.com’s Chase Goodbread. Key has a couple private workouts scheduled and the Bears are among a handful of teams on Key will speak with in the next week or so.
Key (6’6”, 238) had a much better season in 2016 as a sophomore, when he racked up 55 total tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, and 11 sacks in 11 games. He played closer to 270 pounds in 2017 and his numbers dipped to 33 tackles, 5.5 TFL, and 4 sacks in 8 games. He left the team for personal reasons after his sophomore year and while away he had shoulder surgery. Once he returned to the team, he returned before he was ready. “I got too heavy. I got to 270, 280 (pounds) at one point, then with injuries, I rushed to come back,” Key told the NFL Network in February. “I wasn’t ready to come back. It was just competitiveness in me that came out.”
I don’t think Key would be in play for the Bears at eight overall, but if they trade back, or if he’s available in the second round, I could see them rolling the dice on him returning to his 2016 form.