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Bears Draft 2021: Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy talk about their rookie class

5 storylines for the Bears at the NFL scouting combine, starting with whom they might bring in at quarterback Stacey Wescott/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

After the Chicago Bears made their seventh and final pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, they immediately went to work adding to their roster from the group of undrafted free agents, but general manager Ryan Pace and head coach Matt Nagy still had time to give nearly 30 minutes in a post-draft press conference.

We already recapped Pace’s presser from Thursday night when he discussed his top pick, Ohio State QB Justin Fields, and you can find that here. And his press conference from Friday night, which was all about Oklahoma State tackle Teven Jenkins that you can find here.

Pace started Saturday night’s press conference talking about Missouri offensive lineman Larry Borom, their 5th-round pick, calling him a “versatile, big, powerful guy,” saying he can play tackle or guard, and praising him for how hard he worked to drop weight after his final season at Mizzou.

He moved on to discussing Virginia Tech running back Khalil Herbert, their first 6th-rounder, calling him “explosive, fast, versatile,” and highlighting his ability to play special teams, especially as a kick returner.

The Bears next 6th-round pick, wide out Dazz Newsome from North Carolina, is another guy with special teams ability as a punt returner, and Pace specifically mentioned his productivity form the slot.

Pace called their last 6th-round pick, Thomas Graham, a corner from Oregon, versatile enough to play outside or nickel, and lauded his “competitiveness, his energy, kind of the spark that he has,” while adding that they really like his ball skills.

Chicago’s final pick of the draft, BYU defensive lineman Khyiris Tonga, is a guy Pace said could play the nose. He said about Tongo, that he’s a “powerful run stopper, gives us a lot of size inside, we love his make up,” adding that “he can push the pocket.” Pace also took time to point out Tonga’s knack for batting the ball down at the line of scrimmage, while calling him a “natural fit” for their defense.

Nagy began his initial part of the presser with some kind words for the entire scouting staff before talking about the importance that now falls on he and and his coaching staff. “Now it’s our job (the coaches) to make sure we develop these players and make our team better.”

Nagy said he couldn’t remember a first-round that he’s been involved with that has been so “fascinating” with all the uncertainty surrounding what the teams were going to do.

He talked up the deep ball ability that his rookie QB brings to the team, he praised Fields’ coaching he received at Ohio State, and he discussed the importance he and his coaching staff now have on getting him ready to play. Nagy referenced the “blueprint” that was used when he was in Kansas City and they drafted Patrick Mahomes, and while he didn’t say Fields would be on a similar timeline that Mahomes was on, he said that’s a good place to start.

Nagy reiterated that he did speak with Andy Dalton about their decision to take a quarterback in the draft, saying it was the right thing to do, and that Dalton handled the entire situation like a true pro.

Much like Pace did on Thursday night, Nagy spent a lot of time gushing about Fields. His excitement about working with a “generational” talent was evident.

The part of the presser that has Bears fans most riled up was when they mentioned that Teven Jenkins could compete for a starting spot anywhere along their offensive line. Most in social media assumed that meant he’ll be in the mix at left tackle, but Pace didn’t mention any position in particular.

However, it would make sense for Jenkins to compete and show his worth to the team, and for the Bears to start their best five offensive linemen.

You can watch their full post-draft press conference right here.

Everything the Bears did in the 2021 NFL Draft (picks, trades, etc.) can be found in our tracker right here. We also have a UDFA news and rumor tacker running that you can find here to keep you up to date on that.


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