The Chicago Bears have been touted as having one of, if not the, best NFL Drafts in 2021. Honestly, those ranking or grades mean squat until the players take the field and prove themselves worthy of their draft selection or in some cases the cost of a trade. That said, it is always fun to make educated guesses on who will do well and who might fail.
The NFL Players Association (NFLPA) chooses a select group of rookies each year from the most recent draft class and decides they are likely to be the most marketable. The group is called the Rookie Premiere Class and exclusively invited to learn more about the business of the NFL and also how to market themselves for endorsements.
Multiple brands associated with the NFLPA are involved with the event but presented by Panini America. The players were selected take place in a trading card and marketing event. Players are selected based on a plethora of different criteria, including but not limited to position, college performance, and projected marketability and demand.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the event took place virtually. However, it still included some past and current NFL players as guest speakers. This year, the NFLPA selected 60 rookies to be included in the class of players deemed worthy enough as marketable before even taking a snap in the NFL. From a very basic standpoint, there are players at all eight positions; quarterback, running back, offensive line, wide receiver, tight end, defensive line, defensive backs and linebackers.
No one is broken down into more specific roles such as cornerback vs. safety or inside vs. outside linebackers. The NFLPA clearly favors some positions over others and rightfully so when it comes to fanbase popularity. When comparing the Chicago Bears to other teams in the NFC North, the team came in last place for the number of rookies selected to the Rookie Premiere class. Alright, they actually tied for last place. Who likes a tie though? That’s like kissing your sister — yuck!