Chicago Bears: Ryan Pace’s track record of top-50 draft picks

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Chicago Bears, Ryan Pace

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

I am back on the Chicago Bears general manager talk. As most of you know, I have been a Ryan Pace supporter. I understand that the 2021 NFL Draft might not change your mind, but maybe this will help you keep an open mind. I could sum this article up in one sentence. Ryan Pace (if you include Cole Kmet and Jaylon Johnson) is 6-of-9 when drafting in the top 50.

If you ever noticed, most of the draft analysts will break down each year’s draft prospects by top 10, first round, top 50, and top 100. The top 50 prospects are significant because, generally, those players are expected to become day one contributors. Most quarterbacks that are drafted inside the top 10 are expected to become day one starters. Most teams did not sit a quarterback unless they had a well-established veteran ahead of them.

Alright, enough about quarterbacks (for now). A general manager is graded on a multitude of what they do throughout their career. The success of a general manager is heavily the most critical thing to owners. Winning is the ultimate goal for every general manager, but it is what goes into the process that helps define what a general manager can become.

Most general managers build their teams through the NFL Draft every season. Some teams like the Los Angeles Rams build through trades, while others like the New England Patriots have built through free agency. There is no right or wrong way to building a team.

Ryan Pace has been the type of general manager to build through the draft. He often grabs players in free agency on one year of prove-it deals. If that player works out, Ryan Pace will likely offer them a reward. However, it is the draft and scouting that Ryan Pace tries to excel within the NFL.

Finding players later on Day 3 seems to be the trend for the national media on the Chicago Bears. Eddie Jackson, Tarik Cohen, Jordan Howard (early on), and Bilal Nichols are examples of what Ryan Pace can find. When you are finding contributors on day three, you have a good eye for talent.

The other half of fans and media members who don’t care about what Ryan Pace has done on day three, precisely because what he has done in round one, judge him too negatively. While I agree that a general manager needs to make successful picks in round one, that isn’t how we fans should only view Ryan Pace.

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