ESPN’s resident draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. has finally revealed his draft grades for the 2020 draft classes, and he’s giving the Chicago Bears a C+, which ranks 23rd overall on his grades list.
Here’s their haul in case you need a refresher;
2nd Round, Pick 11, 43rd overall: Cole Kmet, TE, Notre Dame
2nd Round, Pick 18, 50th overall: Jaylon Johnson, CB, Utah
5th Round, Pick 155 overall: Trevis Gipson, EDGE, Tulsa
5th Round, Pick 163 overall: Kindle Vildor, CB, Georgia Southern
5th Round, 173 overall: Darnell Mooney, WR, Tulane
7th Round, 226 overall: Arlington Hambright, OL, Colorado
7th Round, 227 overall: Lachavious “Pig” Simmons, OL, Tennessee State
And here’s how Kiper saw it;
Top needs: WR, OT, TE, CB
I’ll admit, this one is tough for me. How do we grade the draft for a team that has no picks in Rounds 1, 3 or 4? Luckily it had an extra second-rounder from the Khalil Mack trade. And it gets credit for using one of those picks on quarterback Nick Foles, even if the Bears have to eat his hefty contract.
The Bears are trying to win now, bringing in Foles and veterans Jimmy Graham and Robert Quinn. But do they have the roster to win now? How good is this team really? Coming off an 8-8 season and big-time regression from former No. 2 overall pick Mitchell Trubisky, the Chicago defense still has a ton of talent. If the quarterback doesn’t turn the ball over, it could try to ride the defense to the playoffs again, but the NFC North is really tough, and Foles and Trubisky haven’t shown that they can consistently play at more than an average level.
So with limited draft capital, I do like the two second-round picks. Cole Kmet (43) is the clear best tight end in this class, and he will help Foles or Trubisky in the passing game and has the potential to develop into a solid blocker in the run game. Yes, the Bears brought in Graham, but they had zero tight ends gain 100 yards last season. And I thought cornerback Jaylon Johnson (50) had a chance to be picked at the end of Round 1, but a shoulder injury hampered his 2019 season and hurt his evaluations. Still, this could be two starters for Chicago.
After that, Trevis Gipson (155) is a part-time outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense, and the Bears reached way down the board at the end of Day 3. So this is another case of two decent players by value on my board, but little else after that.
Kudos for factoring in the comp pick spent to upgrade the Bears QB situation, but someone let Mel know that Foles restructured his deal to get to Chicago.
Also in case you missed it, Kiper did have Kmet mocked in the first round in his final mock draft of 2020.
We recapped several other grades in this article, including the grade the WCG readers gave this class.