Phil Emery’s first draft at the wheel for the Chicago Bears is in the books. I’m not really sure what to make of it. We can go around and try to assign a grade, but let’s face it, we’re kidding ourselves to try to see into the future to see what these guys will turn out to be in a year or two, or hopefully more. Like you and most people, I rely on the opinions of the Mel Kiper Jr’s and Todd McShays of the world to form my opinion for who should go and what they’re going to be.
Maybe I’ve been sullied by years of Jerry Angelo drafts? Maybe I’m just getting to be more of a grumpy old man? I wasn’t doing cartwheels over this draft. I was left thinking that Phil Emery was trying to show that he was the smartest person in the room; that he saw traits in these players that merited their selections, often higher than most thought they should go.
It also left me wondering a bit about Lovie Smith’s future with the Bears. When you see a guy like Shea McClellin selected in the first round, a guy who is thought to be better suited to a 3-4 defense, does that mean that Phil is looking toward a future when he could move on without Lovie and his 4-3, Cover-2 defense?
I was encouraged to see a couple picks devoted to the offense, especially Alshon Jeffery, although he comes with some question marks himself. If he is properly motivated, he could be the real deal.
I think the Bears will have a formidable offense IF and only if they can keep Jay Cutler’s jersey clean. Getting a top backup QB is not my idea of adequate protection for your quarterback. The Bears have been telling us since Free Agency opened that they’re confident with the group of offensive linemen they have. I guess they meant it, because they continued to back the core group that they’re bringing back, including J’Marcus Webb anchoring the critical LT position.
The Bears drafted another safety in Brandon Hardin; that’s 8 years running for those keeping score at home. But this safety didn’t play in 2011 after suffering a season ending shoulder injury. It’s an interesting pick that many “experts” thought might go much later in the draft.
As for the 4th rounder, fullback/tight end Evan Rodriguez, it’s another questionable pick. With a much higher TE prospect on the board in Orson Charles, the Bears took a flier on an undersized H-back type with a big red flag in the character department. Besides, a fairly highly ranked offensive tackle Bobby Massie, with some laziness red flags of his own was left sitting there for the Arizona Cardinals to select with the next pick.
I was trying to find a single word that I’d use to describe this draft and my word is RISKY. It’s risky because I thought Phil took a lot of risks throughout the draft. Risky players, risky fits selected at risky times. I reached out to the Twitter-verse and posed this question – Describe the Chicago Bears Draft in ONE word. Here are some of the responses I got:
— Granny Danger (@Tknovember) April 29, 2012
— Ryan Snow (@Snowman7767) April 29, 2012
— Casey (@higgy684) April 29, 2012
— Matt Clapp (@DaBearNecess) April 29, 2012
— Joey C. (@Joey_C523) April 29, 2012
I also got words like Intriguing, Different, Impending, Offensive, Depth and Arrogant.
What do YOU think? What one word would you use to describe the Bears’ 2012 draft?