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WCG Confidence Board: Version 1.0

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In a year when the Bears have limited ammunition in the draft, it’s more important than ever that they get their picks right.

NFL: Combine Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports

This is the return of my “confidence board.” It began as a project I used to cross-check my own scoring of college players, and last year I decided to make the board public. The basic idea is that if I gather multiple opinions from across the NFL draft guru community, then it should be possible to come up with a pool of candidates well-regarded enough that it is possible to be confident in their prospects. If I am being fully honest, as a Bears fan this year is much less interesting to follow the draft than it has been in years past, and so this board is likely only to see a total of two iterations.

My methodology is simple. I only use public boards that rank either Top 10 by position or Top 100 overall, and I am only using one board per guru (for example, if a site has both a “position ranking” and a “top 100” ranking, then I am only using the more recent of the two). I am in no way weighting boards or privileging one over another. There are boards I disagree with and boards that I like. The goal here is to have an reference point independent of my own biases.

As for scoring, the top prospect on each board, by position or overall, gets a perfect score. Everyone else gets a portion of that (for example, the second-best position player gets a 90% score, and the second-best overall player gets a 99% score). I am fully aware I could do some sophisticated regressions to get even more confident, but this is an exercise in gathering raw data. I’m not looking to invent a proprietary metric.

This first edition includes boards from Walter Football (3-16), Luke Easterling (3-6), DraftTek (3-09), CBS Sports (Undated, but accessed 3-28), Draft Network (4-10), Gil Brandt (4-15), and Vinnie Iver (4-10). In the next edition, I will hope to include a few more. If you have a public board you would like to see me include, leave me a note in the comments section. I will not include anything that only lists Top 5 by position or Top 50 players. I also do not touch mock drafts, which are a different beast entirely. Some familiar faces, like Kiper and Mayock, are absent. That’s because Kiper is behind a paywall and Mayock is busy doing other things.

Here is a link to a simplified version of the board.

The top 10 on this board should not be a surprise to anyone, and most of them get at least a 90% of the maximum possible score. Bosa, Williams, and Allen are all expected to be monsters (97%-plus), while Taylor and Oliver suggest this is a good draft who like football played in the trenches, so to speak (even the intrusion of Devin White at #5 is not a huge break from this trend). Metcalf (#7), Hockenson (#8), and Murray (#9) are actually the highest-rated offensive skills players on the board, and Josh Jacobs is both the highest running back and the only player in the top ten with a score less than 90%.

When it comes to where the Bears will be drafting, things get more interesting. Here are the players ranked 75-100, or basically in the “Bears’ zone” when it comes to this draft:

In Range

Rank Player Position Score
Rank Player Position Score
#75 Hooker, Amani S 22.60%
#76 McGovern, Connor IOL 22.10%
#77 Deiter, Michael OL 22.00%
#78 Pratt, Germaine ILB 21.70%
#79 Oliver, Josh TE 21.40%
#80 Ximines, Oshane EDGE 21.10%
#81 Finley, Ryan QB 20.60%
#82 Omenihu, Charles DL 20.40%
#83 Walker, D'Andre EDGE 20.10%
#84 Saunders, Khalen DL 19.60%
#85 Edwards, David OT 17.40%
#86 Hanks, Terrill OLB 17.10%
#87 Pierschbacher, Ross IOL 16.90%
#88 Coney, Te'Von LB 16.70%
#89 Jordan, Michael IOL 16.30%
#90 Williams, Joejuan CB 16.10%
#91 McLauren, Terry WR 16.10%
#92 Smith, Kaden TE 15.70%
#93 Isabella, Andy WR 15.70%
#94 Lamar, Tre ILB 15.30%
#95 Gaines, Greg DL 15.10%
#96 Collier, L DL 14.60%
#97 Wilson, Caleb TE 14.30%
#98 Hall, Emanuel WR 13.60%
#99 Buggs, Isaiah DL 13.40%
#100 Jackson, Joe EDGE 13.40%
These players might be in range for the Bears

Of these, I personally like Hooker and the EDGE prospects, but I have given up on the thought that I will actually be able to anticipate what Ryan Pace is going to do in any given draft.

Ultimately, it’s likely that anyone the Bears draft is going to be someone the boards are inconsistent on. If someone is available, it will likely be because that player is known to be moderately promising or is contentious in some way.