In free agency, the Chicago Bears made who marque moves offensively…to sign TE Martellus Bennett and LT Jermon Bushrod. It’s without question the the Bears offensive line needs an upgrade. But Bushrod is only part of the equation. The Bears needs to take advantage of the amount of quality offensive lineman in the 2013 NFL Draft starting with Alabama’s offensive lineman D.J. Fluker. Now they can’t take someone like Georgia linebacker Alec Ogletree AND Fluker…it’s an either/or sort of deal because Fluker would need to be their first round selection.
D.J. Fluker may not be the top 2 offensive tackles in this year’s draft, but you could put him around the 4th best in the 2013 draft. Still a good bargain. Take a look at some of his measurements and combine stats from NFLMocks and NFLCombineResults.com:
Weight: 339 pounds
Position Rank: 4
40-yard dash: 5.31 seconds
Bench Press: 21 reps
Here’s some highlights of Fluker at Right Tackle with the Crimson Tide:
Is it a mistake to not take a linebacker in the first round? Absolutely not. Bushrod alone is not enough. The offensive lineman the Bears have already is not enough. I believe that Fluker is the missing piece, and the guy that will help Bushrod, Cutler, and Forte earn their money.
Fluker’s experience is a plus. I would rather the Bears take a guy like Fluker with BCS title game experience OVER a guy like Kyle Long who does not have exactly that sort of experience. Fluker has huge hands with good length for a lineman. For a right tackle, Fluker has respectable speed with solid footwork, sometimes beating defensive ends in college. He will make his money with the run game with his ability to latch onto pass rushers. Coming off a year that Forte didn’t shine, it’s a great addition to get him back on top. Even if Bears fans will see the “option” with Cutler, he’s a great addition that might even give Cutler that extra second or two.
Forget Gabe Carimi. Become a D.J. Fluker fan. He’s not a guy that will demand attention, but will get the job done. He’s young and will be around for awhile. And these days, a worthy offensive lineman is, well, worth millions of dollars.
Bears fans, what do you think? Should the Bears use their first round pick on an offensive lineman?