Chicago Bears Wish List – Rounds 4 & 5

2 of 2

Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

S Ed Reynolds, Stanford (6’1, 207) – Reynolds isn’t as athletic as most of the safeties already drafted, but he’s no slouch and smart in coverage with natural instincts, good ball skills and centerfielder range. Reynolds showed a knack for making big plays, returning 3 of his 6 picks for TDs in 2012.

CB Pierre Desir, Lindenwood (6’2, 198) – After drafting Fuller, corner isn’t the Bears biggest need but I have a 2nd round grade on Desir and it would be hard to pass on him if he is still available in the 4th round. The combination of Fuller and Desir could provide solid depth this season and eventually take over as starters in a year or two. Desir is making a huge jump up in competition from tiny Lindenwood college, but showed he could handle it at the Senior Bowl and then ran well at the combine (4.59) for a guy his size. There is a lot of potential here, Desir has great size, arm length and ball skills. It might take him a year or two before his technique is good enough to crack the starting lineup but once he’s there he should be a solid pro who can match up with the division’s taller receivers.

CB /S Antone Exum, Virginia Tech (6’0, 213) – Was a top 50 prospect before subsequent injuries to his ACL and ankle kept him on the sidelines for most of his senior year. Exum is a versatile defensive back; He played slot corner as a freshman, free safety as a sophomore, and was an outside corner as a junior. His junior year he had 5 interceptions, 16 pass breakups, 2 forced fumbles, and was considered a better NFL prospect then new Bear CB Kyle Fuller. Due to his injuries it’s doubtful he has the same quickness and explosion he had as a corner, but Exum is built like a safety and that should be the position he ends up at in the NFL. He can be a big-hitter in run support and an aggressive coverage guy with good range and the size to match up with the league’s taller receivers. The Bears zone scheme is a perfect fit for Exum’s skill set.

CB/S Dontae Johnson, North Carolina St (6’2, 200) – Tall, versatile defensive back who played safety, corner, and even linebacker in college. Johnson has the size that teams are looking for right now, and helped his cause with a better than expected 4.45 40-time at the combine. Johnson has good range in coverage and is also strong against the run. Johnson could play cover in a zone scheme like the Bears run, but he would be better off at safety and have more value to the Bears.

CB Aaron Colvin, Oklahoma (6’0, 186) – Colvin is a day 2 talent who has dropped due to an ACL tear during Senior Bowl week. Colvin is doubtful to be ready in time for the 2014 season, but assuming full recovery, he has #1 corner potential. Colvin has the speed, athleticism, and aggressive nature of a shut-down CB and this pick could pay off handsomely if the Bears are willing to be patient and stash Colvin till 2015. The Bears have enough corner depth this year to be patient with Colvin and let him take over for Peanut when he retires.

QB Zach Mettenbeger, LSU (6’5, 224) – I don’t think the Bears will use a 4th round pick on a QB, but if Mettenberger is there, I think his name will at least get mentioned in the war room. Considering what Trestman was able to do with a limited talent like McCown, a guy like Mettenberger with ideal size and the best arm in the draft could eventually become the Bears starter under Trestman’s direction. I’ve had Mettenberger pegged as a 2nd round pick all off-season, but his back issues and failed drug test at the combine have dropped him to at least the 4th round. He also had a knee injury has kept him from working out at the combine, but he had a solid pro day and there are no doubts about his arm strength. Mettenberger throws a nice deep ball and would be a potent match with the Bears deep weapons at wide receiver. His main drawback is a lack of mobility but the Bears O-line was solid last year and should be able to keep him clean in the pocket.

RB De’Anthony Thomas, Oregon (5’9, 174) – I had my heart set on Dri Archer as a replacement for Devin Hester, but he was drafted in the 3rd round by the Steelers and Thomas is the next best thing. He is an explosive return man and a dangerous change of pace back in the Darren Sproles mold. It would be exciting to see what Marc Trestman could do with a guy like Thomas and his track star speed.

 Twitter: @MikeFlannery_