Maybe I was a little overambitious trying to do a separate post for each of the nine, yes nine, Day 2 players, so I’ll sum up all of the Bears‘ picks here. I’ve pulled my original posts for the first two players selected into this post to have one giant draft summary chalked full of video clip highlights and all that the true Bears fan needs to know about our new guys. Feel free to post your comments and grades in the Comments section. Make sure to check out my take after all of the summaries.
With their first selection, pick # 68 overall the Bears selected Jarron Gilbert, DE out of San Jose. The 6′ 5″, 280 pounder will add some versatility to the D-line as it is believed he could play either tackle or end. This from Scout.com:
Gilbert is a versatile lineman who has outstanding athleticism. He has a great frame and could add more mass. He can play inside or outside and flashes the ability to be a tremendous threat behind the line of scrimmage. He has long arms and delivers a quick punch to gain an advantage. He holds up well against double teams and disengages quick enough to track down a ball carrier. He’s viewed as a tweener.
And in case the Bears ever need someone to jump out of a pool, here’s this video that’s been making the rounds on YouTube and featured on ESPN when it was announced that the Bears made their first selection of the 2009 NFL draft.
Gilbert said of his pool jumping:
“The pool incident was after a workout during the summer,” he said. “My strength coach told me the story of (former Bear) Adam Archuleta jumping out the pool, and everybody went crazy. The buzz was unbelievable. So I just went up there and tried it. Got it on the first try. … I had to put it on film.”
So it looks like the Bears got a project for new defensive line coach Rod Marinelli. With the contract status of DE’s Adewale Ogunleye and Mark Anderson, this pick makes sense, although there is talk from Halas Hall that they like Gilbert as the three-technique tackle too. Hmm. Makes you wonder what they think of Tommie Harris’ health.
With the 35th pick in the 3rd round, #99 overall, the Bears select wide receiver Juaquin Iglesias out of Oklahoma. Iglesias was linked to the Bears in many pre-draft rumors. Iglesias brings some size to the position, checking in at 6’2″ and 195 lbs and should be a good compliment to a deep threat like Devin. Finally, someone for Cutler to throw to besides Hester!!!
In Round 4, #105 overall, the Bears select DE Henry Melton. Melton was a converted running back for the Texas Longhorns who checks in at 6’3″ and 260 lbs. He’s pretty raw and d-line coach Rod Marinelli should have some fun developing this guy. Check out this video from YouTube on the convert RB.
With pick #119 overall, the Bears selected another Vandy player, cornerback D.J. Moore. Moore probably slipped down to the 4th round because of a lack of size, measuring 5’9″ and 192 pounds. He should provide good competition at one of the cornerback spots and offers great value as a fourth round pick. Hopefully Moore can learn the playbook faster than last years third selection, fellow Vanderbilt alum receiver Earl Bennett.
The Bears added some speed in the 5th round, snagging another wide receiver from a small school, nabbing Johnny Knox from Abilene Christian. Knox is a burner who ran a 4.3 40 and should offer a great vertical threat opposite Hester and alongside Iglesias. I can’t help but think Johnny Knoxville and Jackass when I hear Johnny Knox. Maybe he will make opposing cornerbacks feel like jackasses?
With their second 5th round selection, the Bears selected linebacker Marcus Freeman from THE Ohio State University. (I am contractually obligated to say THE Ohio State University). Freeman is a good value and should be an immediate contributor on special teams.
In the sixth round the Bears finally decided to address their need for a safety, selecting Oregon State’s Al Afalava. Afalava is a noted big hitter and ran a decent 4.47 40. If he can get himself in the right position and stay off the injured list, he’ll be an upgrade to some recent safeties. Somehow, I doubt he will make me forget about Mike Brown. There were better video highlights of Afalava, but I liked the commentary on this one.
With the first of their two 7th round selections, the Bears took guard Lance Louis from San Diego State. Word out of Halas Hall is that the Bears want to convert the 300+ pounder to a tight end. I don’t think that Greg Olsen or Desmond Clark have anything to worry about, but Kellen Davis might. Louis ran a 4.76 40, which is blazing for a 300 pounder, but I doubt he’ll be running up the seam any time soon. Instead, I suspect they’ll turn him into a blocking TE for short yardage, an area where the Bear offense struggled last season. I couldn’t find any video on Louis, but not many highlight reels for a lineman, so you’ll have to settle for this picture.
With the final selection, the Bears picked 6’1″ 210 wide receiver Derek Kinder out of Pitt. Kinder got a big endorsement from former Bears coach Dave Wannstedt, which makes me suspicious of him, but as a 7th rounder, what the heck. Check out this video, nice moves.
I think the Bears should not have traded out of their second round pick because we all know that the deeper you go into the draft, the less likely to find studs. That being said, I think the Bears did a nice job addressing their needs. On the offensive side of the ball, I was surprised that Iglesias lasted as long as he did. Knox didn’t play against top flight competition, but the Bears feature plenty of talent from smaller programs that have thrived in their system. I would love to see Lance Louis line up a H-back and hammer people in front of Forte. It’ll be interesting to see if he can make it.
On the defensive side, the Bears added players at all three levels. The defensive lineman appear to fit the prototype for Cover-2 lineman, slightly smaller and fast. Having to take two players here makes you wonder about Dusty Dvorcek, Mark Anderson and picks like Dan Bauzin in past drafts. Cornerback D.J. Moore also seems to be a system guy. I’ve read in a couple of different places that he is a prototypical C0ver-2 corner. Marcus Freeman seems to be a good value and should challenge Jamar Williams and Joey LaRocque and makes you wonder what Michael Okwo is doing these days.
When you sum it all up and add Jay Cutler to the draft class, it appears the Bears are better off today than they were when the season ended. Now the hard work of integrating these new pieces all together begins. Training camp is just over 3 months away.
I’ll try to dust off my camoflage and look Behind Enemy Lines this week to see what the NFC North did and how they stack up with the new-look Bears.
Topics: 2009 Nfl Draft, Al Afalava, Chicago Bears, Chicago Bears Blog, Derek Kinder, Desmond Clark, Devin Hester, Dj Moore, Draft, Greg Olsen, Henry Melton, Jarron Gilbert, Jay Cutler, Johnny Knox, Juaquin Iglesias, Lance Louis, Marcus Freeman, Matt Forte, NFC North, NFL, NFL Draft