Scott Sewell-USA TODAY Sports
Chicago Bears 3rd round mock:
71.) Tyler Lockett, WR – Kansas St
The Bears passed on the receiver position last year despite one of the deepest WR classes in history. This year’s class isn’t as strong at the top, but it may be deeper. The Bears were hurt by a lack of depth at WR last season after injuries to all three of their projected starters at different points of the season. Even when healthy the Bears were missing some diversity in their receiving corps. They have two of the better outside receivers in the game in Marshall and Jeffrey, but are missing a reliable underneath receiver who can get open on short routes over the middle. New OC Adam Gase had success with big receivers in Denver, but also got the ball to underneath receiver Wes Welker quite often (73 catches in 2013). A speedy underneath receiver like Lockett would give Gase and the Bears QB a new type of weapon to utilize in fixing the Bears offense. The Bears also struggled to find a reliable return man last season after letting All-Pro Devin Hester leave town, but Lockett has special teams skills as well and could give them a dangerous option in the return game.
Attributes – 5’10 | 181 | 4.46
Scouting report – Small, but extremely quick and a very sharp route runner who has had no trouble getting open at the college level. His best fit in the NFL will be as a slot receiver, but Lockett has the speed to take the top off of defenses as well. The only knock on Lockett besides his lack of size are occasional concentration issues that have led to some drops on easy passes. He has made plenty of highlight reel catches though and I’m not worried about his ability to catch the ball consistently. His route running skills are what separate Lockett from the other under-sized receivers in the draft; he has a variety of double moves that have been burning DBs for years in the Big12. Lockett has been very productive with 187 catches, 2,777 receiving yards, and 22 TDs over the last two seasons despite inconsistent QB play. In the return game he led the nation in kick return average as a freshman with 35.2 ypr, finished 2nd in the nation in punt return average as a senior (19.1) and has 6 return TDs in his college career. Lockett has the quickness and acceleration to get open at the NFL level and should contribute immediately as a return specialist.
NFL comparison – T.Y. Hilton
Others considered: S Anthony Harris (Virginia), S Kurtis Drummond (Michigan St), DT Grady Jarrett (Clemson), DE Henry Anderson (Stanford), WR Stephon Diggs (Maryland), CB Senquez Golson (Mississippi), CB Steven Nelson (Oregon St)
¹ Mock drafts used to determine average draft slot: CBS Sports (Rang, Brugler), WalterFootball, DraftTek, ESPN Insider (Kiper, McShay), NFL (Brooks), and SB Nation.