Chicago Bears are in trouble if Mel Kiper is right about the 2021 NFL Draft

Chicago Bears (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
3 of 3
Chicago Bears, Justin Fields
Chicago Bears (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images) /

If Mel Kiper’s prediction comes true, the Chicago Bears will have to trade up

In Mel Kiper’s recent mock draft, the chances of a top-five quarterback slipping to 20th-overall is slim-to-none. Kiper had this to say:

"I would be very surprised if one dropped to 20. I thought maybe at one point in time Mac Jones could or Trey Lance could. But I just think that’s not going to happen. The quarterbacks always get forced up higher than they probably should in a lot of cases. In this case, I don’t necessarily think they are getting forced up. That’s where they’re graded out to go and that’s where they should go based on their rating."

In Kiper’s draft, Trevor Lawrence goes first overall to the Jaguars. He then has the Falcons trading up two spots to draft Zach Wilson. Later, Kiper is mocking the 49ers trade up to seven and select Justin Fields. These were three players I too thought would be out of reach for the Bears.

However, Kiper then has the Panthers using the eighth pick to select Mac Jones and the Patriots then trade up six spots to select Trey Lance. Just like that, the Chicago Bears saw the first five quarterbacks go off the board before the draft even reaches the 10th pick.

What does this mean? Well, the good news here is by the time the 2021 NFL Draft starts in April, the Bears will have a better idea of what the quarterback landscape looks like for them. Have they traded for a quarterback or signed one in free agency? If they land a top quarterback in a trade, then this mock draft won’t matter because it is likely their 20th-pick is included in the trade.

Hot. Teams' possible cap casualties the Bears must consider. light

However, if the Bears have not secured a quarterback worthy enough to be considered a hopeful franchise quarterback or even one with short-term upside, then the draft is where Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy must turn their focus. The two cannot put their jobs on the line with Nick Foles as their only starting quarterback option in 2021. They must trade away the future to move up and take one of the top-five quarterbacks or 2021 will look very similar to 2020.

The question is, how high can they move up and will it be enough to secure one of these top prospects?