The Bears thought they had MLB covered after drafting Jon Bostic last year, but they are already considering moving Bostic to OLB. He clearly wasn’t ready to play last year, Bostic struggled to shed blocks, understand the defensive scheme, and in coverage. I’m not giving up on Bostic quite yet, he did show flashes of being a play-maker in the preseason and he may prove he can handle the MLB role this year. If not, the Bears need a back-up plan since DJ Williams is just a temporary solution.
Over the next two days I will be listing the players I like best for the Bears in every round at each position of need.
MLB Depth Chart:
D.J. Williams, Jon Bostic, Shea McClellin?
Round 1 (#14) – C.J. Mosley, Alabama (6’2, 234): Well rounded linebacker with good speed, toughness, instincts, and coverage ability. The only legit knocks on Mosley is that he’s been banged up a little with minor injuries and he is a little light for traditional middle linebackers. With the NFL becoming a passing league, I think we will see MLBs trending lighter and faster because they need to be more agile in coverage. Mosley is NFL ready and should be a stud from week 1 on.
Round 2 (#51) – Chris Borland, Wisconsin (5’11, 248): He would be a lock for the first round if he were a few inches taller, but he’s shorter than ideal for the position. His lack of height will hurt him covering taller tight ends, but that’s really his only flaw. Borland might have the best instincts I’ve seen at the college level since Luke Kuechly. He ran a 4.7 40 at his pro day, so his speed is only average, but his elite instincts allow him to play a tenth or two faster on the field. If Borland can get there, he’s going to make the tackle. He’s a big hitter with 14 forced fumbles in his college career, has a knack for making big plays when needed, he is solid in zone coverage and more importantly he is leader on and off the field.
Round 3 (#81) – Shane Skov, Stanford (6’2, 245): Plays with a ferocity and toughness that the Bears defense could use. Skov was the emotional leader of a very tough Stanford defense last year. His pregame speeches are legendary for inspiring teammates, but more importantly his on the field play set the tone for Stanford’s fierce, hard-hitting defense. Skov is a sure tackler who can lay the lumber on opposing running backs or receivers crossing the middle. His blitzing instincts are so good that he is in the backfield so quick it looks like he is off-sides. Skov has barely enough speed for MLB in a 4-3, but makes up for it with great overall instincts. His man coverage needs work, but Skov plays very well in zone coverage. He’s a better fit in a 3-4, but can play either and worst case he will be a 2-down run stuffer for the Bears.