2018 NFL Draft: Who would you have drafted?
If you had the same pool of players available at each pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, would you have made the same picks as Ryan Pace?
Everyone can be the arm chair GM. Oh I would have done this, oh he is a reach, that is way too high. However, you never offer your understanding of the board and how you would complete their needs. So, how would draft the Chicago Bears based on what they had to work with in the 2018 NFL draft?
Round One: Roquan Smith
My personal draft board coming in was Quenton Nelson at one and Roquan Smith at two. Taking my second overall player at the eighth overall pick is exactly what you want to do. After breaking down both Smith and Tremaine Edmunds it became apparent that while you understood the hype on Edmunds, you are buying into something that isn’t all the way there yet with Edmunds. In Smith, you are competing right now. Love the mentality, love the pick.
Round Two: James Daniels
This is where it gets tricky. I had James Daniels as my 17th overall prospect. Loved his athleticism and versatility to get out and block in space. However, Harold Landry was sitting there. I had pumped Landry as a top ten pick, and ranked him 10th overall. The positional value and my opinion says Landry.
Then, there are the medicals. Yes, there are reports of medicals being an a reason a player I liked so much would be there at 39, in Daniels. However, there are those same medicals on Landry. They both went around the same spot. Who knows. If the Bears had the same medical grade on the two and chose Daniels, I would have taken Landry. If you are telling me the medicals are the difference here, I again have no qualms.
Round Two: Anthony Miller
Considering the trade was already made, you can dissect that idea if you’d like, but I’ll make the pick. Kemoko Turay went the pick after. I loved Turay and saw him as a player that the team should hope to fall to round four due to some of his question marks. However, if you were to ask me in terms of risk management what is the safer bet, Kylie Fitts in round six, or Turay in round two, Fitts is the better value.
With that said, give me Miler. The Bears bounced at the right time. Right ahead of Miller, Courtand Sutton, Dante Pettis and Christian Kirk. Three receivers who can do it all with the ball in their hands, and fit the Nagy profile. Right after went James Washington and D.J. Chart, two deep threats. It is clear that the possession and slot upside that Miller brings, combined with Pettis and Kirk, two very similar profiled players jumping off of the board gave them their window to jump.
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Round Four: Joel Iyiegbuniwe
This one is tough, because like many, he was not on the radar. However, he was on the radar amongst league circles. Still, I would have taken Josh Sweat. I know, I just went on an I don’t know the medicals speal. Still, the Philadelphia Eagles got him 15 picks later. I mean, we should start trusting the Eagles now I guess, right?
If you are telling me the medicals are similar enough I am still taking Sweat over Fitts with the two round difference as well.
Round Five: Bilal Nichols
The extra second round pick made this one real flexible. If the team did take Iyiegbuniwe, they could have landed Duke Ejiofor here, who went about 30 picks later, but ahead of Fitts. Another argument could be made for Micah Kiser, if you missed on Iyiegbuiwe. Still, Nichols has higher upside and serves a roster purpose. I like the pick.
Round Six: Kylie Fitts
If I took Sweat earlier, and took Nichols round five, a linebacker round six works. Jack Cichy and Shaun Dion-Hamilton have injury questions, but it is round six and so does Fitts. However, both bring the special teams, and Dion-Hamilton was regarded as the leader in the middle of the Alabama defense. His loss is what moved Minkah Fitzpatrick to that middle linebacker spot. Communication was an issue when Danny Trevathan went down. I know, Roquan Smith can do that. Still, worth noting.
Round Seven: Javon Wims
This was one of my favorite picks. I truly believe he can work his way onto a roster. I did not even try to find someone else because I trust that they can get the most out of the jump ball ability in a way that I saw him as a fifth round prospect.
So, how would you have played the draft. It is usually a good thing when all you do is no and agree at each pick?