Jan 6, 2014; Pasadena, CA, USA; Florida State Seminoles nose tackle Timmy Jernigan (8) celebrates late in the fourth quarter against the Auburn Tigers for the 2014 BCS National Championship game at the Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Kiper Pegs Defensive Lineman for Bears in Latest Mock Draft

Mock draft season is in full swing.  How do I know?  Because Mel Kiper has already released Mock Draft 2.0 (Insider protected).  I’m going to leak a little nugget for you Bears fans dying to see what Kiper thinks the Bears will do when the draft rolls around in May:

Timmy Jernigan *
Chicago Bears (8-8)
COLLEGE: Florida St.
AGE: 21
HT: 6-2
WT: 298

Analysis: Another pick I’m sticking with because of the hand-to-glove fit of talent and need. I’m a bigger fan of Jernigan in a 4-3 look, where he’s using his power to go through a blocker and not trying to beat people off the snap and use quickness. He’s not a blow-by rusher, but has the strength and quick feet to eat up a running play before it goes anywhere. The Bears were a mess on the inside of the D-line last season due to injuries.

Uncle Mel had a conference call (why doesn’t anyone ask me to do a conference call when I put together a mock draft???) to discuss his latest mock and was asked about which way the Bears, who need lots of help at all levels of their defense, should look first.

“I don’t think the defensive line is something you can really wait on,” Kiper said. “There’s not a lot of depth at end or tackle. There is more depth in the secondary that you can get guys down the line, particularly at corner. There’s apt depth at wide receiver.

“So if you look at the Bears’ needs, I would say get the defensive linemen early, wait on those other positions just a bit because the defensive line, both at end and tackle, is just not that deep.”

I’ll take that advice into account next time I do a mock draft.  I went with a cornerback in Round 1 in my latest mock.  But it’s early.  We’ve got a couple of months – and the Scouting Combine and the start of Free Agency – before we get some real clarity on where players will go.

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Tags: Chicago Bears Timmy Jernigan

  • Mike Flannery

    For the first time ever, I agree with Mel Kiper on a Bears 1st round pick!

    • Erik Lambert

      It’s really a no-brainer. They need a defensive tackle whose disruptive and can stop the run and the class isn’t deep enough to wait until later. If it’s not Jernigan it will be either Hageman or Donald.

      • Mike Flannery

        I don’t’ think it’s a no-brainer at all. The Bears have major holes at DE, LB, CB, and S as well. The DT isn’t as deep as other positions but I could see the Bears taking Mosley, Dennard, Gilbert, Dix or Pryor in the first round. DT is an obvious need, but could be fixed by re-signing some combination of Melton / Wooten / Ratliff / Collins, or signing a free agent like McDonald / Walker / Joseph, and then drafting a DT like Quarles or Sutton in round 2 or 3. Lot of options.

        • Erik Lambert

          I’m not saying it’s the pick I’d make, I’m saying it’s the one that makes the most sense based on what happened last year. Personally I’d take Mosley before anybody followed by Dix and then Jernigan, Pryor and Gilbert or Dennard. I trust Emery to have his facts in place by the time things get rolling. One thing he’s proven over the last two years is that he likes to eliminate needs so he can get as much flexibility in the draft as possible.

  • Michael Curcio

    Hopefully they figure out if they are still running a 4-3 by draft time to help draft accordingly. I still dont trust Emerys eye for defensive talent.

    • Erik Lambert

      Keep in mind they have a lot more experience on the defensive staff now with Herring and Pasqualoni. Not to mention Clint Hurtt from Louisville. They will bring all of that knowledge to the war room to help Emery.

  • Wisdom Speaks

    Jernigan is really 6’1″ 289 pounds, the measurements that are being reported are the player inflated college bio that’s become the norm until the Combine results bring every player’s measurements inline with reality. Either way, his to small for what the Bears should be looking for.

  • FJ doreza

    Aaron Donald is the highly productive, disruptive, playmaker the Bears need. He has the great burst and speed to attack behind the line and proved it in college. His size is his strength and advantage as taller linemen have a hard time reaching down to get their hands on him. His swim move is superb and has the brute strength and leverage to throw blocks and break through double teams better than any DT around. His game film and stats are already impressive enough and after the combine he only made it a bigger no brainer in the first round for the Bears. if we can get Van Noy, or trade up, he would also be another big playmaker with the skills to do it all. He has good size, long arms and is a great athlete with the versatility to rush and to cover. He is also a player that has the smarts and experience to start now, and take over for Briggs next year. We still have some questions at linebacker and if the Bears go hybrid, Kyle would be a great fit. With Josh gone, we really need to draft Zach Mettenberger who played in a pro style offense behind Cam Cameron at LSU. In my mind, Zach has the best arm. He has good mechanics, a smooth delivery, easy velocity, good anticipation, great touch and stands tall and confident in the pocket. Yes, he’s slow but how many Super Bowl QB’s were fast? With good protection Zach could tear up defenses and I believe he will be better than Cutler because he has good leadership skills, un underrated trait, and has shown improvement in his footwork and decision making every year and if he didn’t get injured he might have been a first rounder. Now, as the forgotten man with the injury and the uncalled for hype on Manziel, Zach could be around in the mid rounds. Lets hope we can pick him up.