In my first Chicago Bears “theme” mock draft of the season I went with a best player available philosophy, and for my second mock the rule I followed was all offense on day two. For my latest theme mock draft my goal was to trade back a couple times to ensure I had five top-100 picks. Maximizing the haul on day two seems like a sure way to infuse some youth on a team that is in desperate need of competitive depth.
My top five picks would all be in the mix to play as rookies, and while I probably reached a bit on my first two picks, I have a feeling these two players are going to be overdrafted based on their upside, so I pulled the trigger to make sure I got them.
I used the Pro Football Focus mock draft simulator again because that allows you to trade not only picks, but players as well, and I had to flip back up QB Nick Foles for a seventh round pick. I also moved 39 overall for 45 and 100, and I then traded 45 for 58 and 82. I could have held out and worked the system for a late sweetener pick or two, but like the real draft I only give myself a few minutes to haggle at the trades.
Here’s how my latest theme mock went.
2nd Round, Pick 48 - Alec Pierce, WR, Cincinnati
I left Pierce on my board despite the fact that he grew up a Packer fan. I suppose can overlook that to get the 6’3”, 213 pounder on the Bears. His size and deep ball ability (4.41 forty, 40.5 vertical) would be a great fit with Justin Fields and help open up the offense.
2nd Round, Pick 58 - Cole Strange, OG, Chattanooga
Strange’s stock has some buzz around it since his performance at the Senior Bowl and the NFL Combine. Many scouts believe he has the ability to be a day one starter at guard, and he’d be a perfect scheme fit for what the Bears are going to do under offensive coordinator Luke Getsy.
3rd Round, Pick 71 - Brian Asamoah, LB, Oklahoma
Linebacker isn’t a huge need for the Bears, but with the way the new scheme likes to interchange their linebackers, the athletic and explosive (4.56 forty) Asamoah would be a perfect scheme fit for defensive coordinator Alan Williams.
3rd Round, Pick 82 - Kellen Diesch, OL, Arizona State
The 6’7”, 300 pounder is technically sound and athletic and would add depth at a position the Bears could use some youth at. His arm length isn’t ideal for an NFL tackle, but he makes up for that with quickness.
3rd Round, Pick 100 - Zyon McCollum, CB, Sam Houston State
A 6’4”, 200 pound corner with 4.33 speed that has experience in zone and was a team captain seems like a no-brainer fit for the Bears. With his size and physicality he’s a candidate to move to safety as well.
5th Round, Pick 148 - Chris Paul, OL, Tulsa
Paul (6’4”, 324) has plenty of experience at tackle, but many believe he’s a better fit at guard. His athleticism and football IQ makes him an ideal depth option taht could grow into a starter role.
5th Round, Pick 150 - Markquese Bell, S, Florida A&M
Jacob Infante wrote about Bell in this article; 2022 NFL Draft: 10 HBCU prospects for Bears to target.
Bell is a 6-foot-2, 212-pound thumper of a safety who hits hard and isn’t afraid to charge downhill and lower the shoulder. He brings good versatility in the box and off the edge, but he’s also athletic enough to play in coverage out of the slot, in two-high shells and as a single-high defender.
6th Round, Pick 186 - Chigoziem Okonkwo, TE, Maryland
I couldn't pass on the upside from the 6’3”, 250 pound U tight end prospect. His 4.52 speed makes him a match-up problem and he’s shown to be effective after the catch.
7th Round, Pick 222 - Jason Poe, OL, Mercer
A quadruple dip at o-line wasn’t what I was expecting, but Poe has become one of my favorite day three OL prospects, because he can play fullback too!