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2019 NFL Draft: Possible Day 3 options for Bears

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With the first two days of the draft having concluded, these players are among the best options for the Bears on Day 3.

NCAA Football: Rutgers at Penn State
Amani Oruwariye could be an enticing option for the Bears in the fourth round if available.
Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports

After what seemed like an eternity, the Chicago Bears finally made a draft pick in the form of Iowa State running back David Montgomery.

Trading their third-round pick—No. 87 overall—their fifth-round pick and a 2020 fourth-rounder to the New England Patriots for the No. 73 selection and a sixth-round pick, the Bears acquired the running back they envision as the head of their new committee. With Tarik Cohen and Mike Davis complementing the former Cyclone, the team has accomplished their goal of revamping the running back position.

So now what?

There are several talented players still available in this year’s draft, and some of them could potentially fall to the Bears’ fourth-round selection at No. 126 overall. Coincidentally enough, many of them are defensive backs: one of the team’s biggest needs. These players are among the best players still on the board heading into the third day of the draft.

Julian Love, CB, Notre Dame

Julian Love carries a first-round grade on my big board, so the fact that he is still available heading into Day 3 of the draft is pretty surprising.

Love is an instinctive, athletic and versatile cornerback who can play on the outside and the slot at a high level. He can accelerate out of his breaks very well, he has good lateral agility and has solid deep speed. As a tackler, he has very good closing speed and takes good angles to the ball carrier. His ball skills are impressive, too, as he can high point the ball well on deep balls and jump routes. Barring some unforeseen off-the-field issue, I really can’t see why Love is still available. He could possibly go off the board before the Bears pick in the fourth round, but he would be a fantastic selection if they were to pick him.

Amani Hooker, S, Iowa

My draft crush is still available entering the fourth round, and I am going to hyperventilate during every pick until he is selected, after which I will either cry tears of joy or smash my head through my wall, depending on whether or not the Bears pick him. I’m emotionally stable, guys; I swear.

Amani Hooker is the most intelligent safety I’ve watched in the draft process, as he can diagnose very quickly to jump routes or close in on receivers to make a tackle. He has solid hip fluidity in coverage, and he’s a reliable tackler in run support. Hooker is also a versatile defensive back who can cover as a slot cornerback, as well. He’s not a stellar athlete, sure, but he isn’t slow by any means. The Bears need a long-term strong safety if Ha Ha Clinton-Dix leaves after the 2019 season, and the Iowa product would be a perfect fit if he were to be picked.

Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, S, Florida

While not a pure strong safety like Hooker, Chauncey Gardner-Johnson has the athleticism and the versatility to project as a potential target for the Bears.

Gardner-Johnson is a very good athlete with great closing speed, direction-changing abilities and hip fluidity. He has good instincts in space, as he can diagnose plays quickly and accelerate to break up passes or bring down ball carriers. He has very good range, and he has experience in single-high and two-high coverages, as well as a slot cornerback or a blitzing rusher off the edge. On tape, he displays a competitive personality around which teammates can rally. He’s shorter than six feet tall, and he tackles at the legs too often, but his upside in coverage makes him a potential value pick in Round 4.

Amani Oruwariye, CB, Penn State

Out of the cornerbacks still available in the draft, Amani Oruwariye is the best at press-man coverage. Coincidentally enough, the Bears need a cornerback who can excel in that role. How convenient!

The six-foot-two, 205-pound Oruwariye has length galore for the outside cornerback position. He is physical at the line of scrimmage and delivers a good jab in press coverage. His ball skills are impressive, as he can jump routes, high point the ball and deflect passes at a high level. For a bigger cornerback, he also has pretty good hip fluidity. While not a standout athlete or a fantastic tackler, his physical tools are similar to those of at least a Day 2 draft pick. He would be an intriguing selection in the long run to replace Prince Amukamara.

Christian Miller, EDGE, Alabama

The Bears also could use some depth at edge rusher, and there happen to be a few talented players still available there.

Christian Miller is one of those players, and he projects as a valuable rotational pass rusher early on in his career. He is a very good athlete who explodes off the ball consistently, he packs a solid punch at the initial point of contact, and he is good at bending and turning the corner. He is also pretty solid in coverage, as he has good hip fluidity and acceleration coming out of his breaks. While Miller could add some more pass-rushing moves to his arsenal, he’s an athletic prospect with room to grow.

Justin Hollins, EDGE, Oregon

Like Miller, Justin Hollins is also a raw, yet very athletic edge rusher with promise.

He ran a 4.5 40-yard dash and had a 36.5-inch vertical jump at the Combine, and that athleticism is apparent on tape. He accelerates very well off the snap, he can turn the corner and bend underneath offensive tackles, and he is a fluid mover in space. Hollins can also drop back into coverage and even showed promise covering receivers out of the slot. Though he never had truly great sack production and will need to bulk up to compete with NFL offensive linemen, his athleticism gives him a promises future in the pros.