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Film study: New Bears CB Thomas Graham Jr. an intelligent ball-hawk

Get to know what sixth-round pick Thomas Graham Jr. brings to the Bears.

Oregon State v Oregon Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images

The Bears bolstered their secondary with the third of their sixth-round picks, selecting cornerback Thomas Graham Jr. out of Oregon with the No. 228 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Graham opted out of the 2020 season, but his production at the collegiate level still sticks out. With 8 interceptions and 32 pass deflections over the course of three seasons, he was able to consistently make plays at the cornerback position during his time with the Ducks.

A Senior Bowl standout, Graham won over the hearts of analysts and evaluators with his sticky coverage that was also apparent on tape. He is an intelligent defender and a quick processor with a high understanding of route concepts and how to defend them. He is patient with his footwork, fluid in coverage and offers good downhill speed as a tackler.

I went to the tape to break down what Graham brings to the Bears’ secondary, specifically as a slot defender.

Our Bear With Me podcast has been firing through the entire draft class on an individual pod by pod basis, so give a listen to Robert Schmitz as he’s joined by Jacob Infante to break down Thomas Graham’s game.