I’m at the point in mock draft season where I won’t even bother with a mock unless it has the Chicago Bears trading back from the first overall selection. I know it takes two to tango, and the Bears may not get the haul they are hoping for, but there is no way they’ll sit at one and pick defensive players with so many franchises looking to move up for their quarterback.
General manager Ryan Poles will sift through the offers and take the best package of picks, preferably with a 2024 first-rounder coming back. He knows his franchise needs talent, and the best way to do that is to have as many picks in the draft as possible.
The latest mock from CBS Sports’ Chris Trapasso has the Bears trading all the way back to seven, and here’s who Trapasso had the Bears picking.
Trenton Simpson LB, CLEMSON • JR • 6’3” / 240 LBS
Simpson can become the quarterback of the Bears defense. He has that type of high-end athletic skill set. In the trade back, the Bears get this pick from the Raiders along with their 2023 picks in Round 2, Round 3 and Round 5, a 2024 first and third, plus a 2025 first and fourth.
I’ll address the compensation first because that’s my favorite thing about this mock.
Chicago getting eight draft picks back for the number one pick, including first-rounders through the 2025 season, is a deal that needs to be made.
As for Simpson, many scouts believe he’s more than a traditional off-ball linebacker, and that his athleticism and all-around skill set should have him thrive in the NFL if he maxes out his potential. The Bears would likely slot him into their all-important weakside linebacker spot, but Simpson’s ability to cover and rush the passer would mean he could line up all over the defense.
Then again, he is an off-ball linebacker, and drafting one in the top 10 when the Bears have so many other needs seems shortsighted.
I reached out to our Lead Draft Analyst, Jacob Infante, to get his thoughts on this mock, and here’s what he told me.
Although I love the haul the Bears got in this mock draft, Simpson isn’t the player I would’ve picked here. Though he’s a freak athlete at linebacker, he’s still a work in progress from an instincts perspective, and I can really argue for a linebacker in the top 10 if they’re a true blue-chip prospect. Of the players available, the likes of Tyree Wilson, Peter Skoronski, Paris Johnson, Myles Murphy or the top wide receivers intrigue me more for the Bears.
How would you like it if the actual draft fell this way for the Bears? Would you be fine with a linebacker in the first round when the Bears have so many other needs, or do you consider Simpson the best player available at that spot?