My latest theme mock draft for the Chicago Bears is a really fun one because not only is this my all-trenches edition, but I also used the Fanspeak simulator featuring the big board from our Lead Draft Analyst, Jacob Infante!
Fanspeak has been in the draft simulator game since the beginning, so it was neat when they asked to include Jacob's big board in their database.
As I said, this mock is all about the trenches, but I had to execute a trade to move back from one because I see no scenario where the Bears stand pat. I sent the first pick to the Indianapolis Colts for their first-round pick (4 overall), their third-rounder in 2023, and a first-round pick in 2024. I'm sure I could have played around and gotten more, but for the purpose of the mock, I wanted to get to work.
I also was offered several other trades, but I just wanted to get mocking and learn about some linemen the Bears could pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.
I decided to alternate my picks on offense and defense, and I generally stuck to Jacob's draft board on every selection except for a few times I passed over an apparent scheme mismatch. The first theme mock I did was a strict best player available one, but this time it’s all about the line.
4: R1/P4 - DE, Will Anderson Jr. - Alabama: This one is a no-brainer if he's there for the Bears. Anderson is a blue-chipper and game-changer and would be a day-one starter to terrorize opposing quarterbacks.
53: R2/P22 - C, John Michael Schmitz - Minnesota: Schmitz has become a popular player mocked to the Bears after a nice 2022 season for the Gophers, his solid Senior Bowl, and his combine performance.
64: R3/P1 - DL, Tuli Tuipulotu - USC: Tuli played more edge in the Trojan's scheme, but our guy Greg Gabriel was thinking more defensive tackle when he wrote him up a few weeks ago, but that was before he checked in at just 266 pounds at the combine. Where ever he winds up in the NFL, he's a good football player that should contribute immediately.
79: R3/P16 - C, Jarrett Patterson - Notre Dame: Another center? Yeah, I know, but some scouts think he could move to guard, and the other o-linemen in this general area of the board wouldn't have made sense. USC's Andrew Vorhees could have been my selection here, but he just tore his knee up at the combine.
103: R4/P1 - DT, Zacch Pickens - South Carolina: The 6'4', 291-pounder just had a nice combine flashing his athleticism and could probably get reps at both DT spots for the Bears.
133: R4/P31 - OT, Carter Warren - Pittsburgh: Warren has the length to remain at tackle (6'5 1/2" with 35 3/8" arms) and four years of experience on the left side.
137: R5/P1 - DE, Habakkuk Baldonado - Pittsburgh: A good developmental defensive end prospect with decent size (6'4", 251) and athleticism.
150: R5/P14 - G, Braeden Daniels - Utah: Plenty of experience at tackle and guard, but 33' arms likely means he'll be inside in the NFL. Daniels would be a good scheme fit for Chicago's outside zone.
220: R7 P1 EDGE Tavius Robinson - Ole Miss: I've seen some projections having Robinson going before the 7th round, but as we see every year, the draft is full of fallers and risers. Whether the Bears get the 6'6", 257-pound Robinson and his 4.66 forty this late in the draft or not, I would expect to see Ryan Poles pull the trigger on an upside athlete or two on day three of the draft.
Would you like to see any of these linemen on the Bears?