Chicago Bears: 5 reasons Ryan Pace nailed 2021 NFL Draft
By Ryan Heckman
3. Ryan Pace threw caution to the wind in order to fix the Chicago Bears
The difference between what Pace did in 2017 and 2021 starts with taking the right guy. Back when Pace traded up one spot four years ago, there were countless people who were adamant that the Bears were drafting Deshaun Watson. We know how that turned out.
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This year, both Fields and Mac Jones were on the board when Pace traded up. It felt as though he was going to make the right call, but there was still a sliver of doubt. Still a small part of people may have thought, “Is he going to make the same mistake again?”
He did not. Pace waved goodbye to a haul of picks to get the right quarterback this time and did it without blinking. He’s always been a risk-taker, but he made it count with Fields.
Not only did he take a huge gamble on Fields, but Pace traded away a hefty amount of value to Carolina when he took Teven Jenkins. Giving up your third-rounder to then not pick again for over 100 selections? That was ballsy.
Fans were happy with the selection, but there were a lot of immediate reactions on social media which insinuated Pace gave up far too much — and those people weren’t wrong. Pace did give up too much to move up 13 spots. However, he didn’t seem to care. In return, the Bears were able to get a first-round talent in Jenkins. It was another risk worth taking — and he took it.