I am not going to do a big breakdown, yet, on what the Bears’ needs in the 2018 NFL Draft are. For now, we need to take a simplified look at the Chicago Bears’ draft needs and see what they could do about these needs.
Pro Football Spot has found five key needs that the Bears have heading into this offseason. There are some glaring needs while one or two may be subtle but could have a big impact on the team further down the road. Some of these needs have been bantered about repeatedly so we will touch on them lightly.
This list is in no order.
Offensive Tackle-What side should they draft? Right or left? That’s an excellent question. The Bears have Charles Leno, Jr., on the left side and he’s locked up with a lucrative contract that pays him left tackle money. The Bears do need a right tackle, however, as Bobby Massie is not an ideal right tackle any longer. He’s been barely serviceable having not been strong in either facet of the offense (running and passing).
Could it be possible that the Bears could take Leno and move him to the right side then draft or get a free agent offensive tackle? That might be a move that Chicago decides to make. At any rate, either a high pick for a starter would be viable here or someone that could develop to become a starter quickly.
Wide Receiver-This one is a no-brainer. The Bears had one of the worst wide receiving corps in the NFL last year and need a lot of help. Drafting one with their first pick may not be out of the question so don’t be surprised if they do it. There is some nice talent at the top of the draft that should be available (Calvin Ridley?) and the Bears could take advantage of it. They have the quarterback to get the ball to the receivers (with some more experience). Now they just need the pass catchers.
Cornerback-If the Bears don’t re-sign Kyle Fuller and/or Prince Amukamara, they are going to have some serious trouble at the cornerback spot. The draft may be the place they look for to bring help and stability at the position. There are going to be a bevy of decent cornerbacks in the 2018 NFL draft so Chicago could draft a starter or could draft for depth depending on what they decide to do with their free agents. At the least, they should look at adding some depth at the position in the draft.
Inside Linebacker-You may not think that this is a big need or even a need at all but with the developments surrounding Jerrell Freeman, and what we saw last season, it is. The Bears could grab one of the guys who are available in rounds two or four and groom them to replace Freeman. Sure, they have players like Christian Jones and Nick Kwiatkoski available to fill in, but those guys are stop gaps and not full-time starters.
A starter at inside linebacker, or at least one for the future, should be found in this year’s draft.
Tight End-Yes, I know that the Bears drafted Adam Shaheen last year and signed Dion Sims to a contract but after those two, there isn’t much there. In fact, Shaheen, whose potential has not yet been realized, may be the only one who is worth retaining at the position. The kind of offense head coach Matt Nagy may run could utilize the tight end often so having another quality tight end would be beneficial. I am not saying that they need to draft one high but getting one that can catch passes effectively would be a great idea.