Chicago Bears first round big board, spoiler: no QBs

Chicago Bears-Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Chicago Bears-Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports /
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.After clinching the number one overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, the Chicago Bears have a lot of options in front of them. They can trade back and get a haul of draft picks, draft an elite player in this class, or hopefully, perhaps both.

The Chicago Bears can find starters at nearly every position in the first round

This particular draft is deep at the top in a couple of different positions, especially on defense, where the Bears could certainly use some help in the form of a new franchise player. The top of the draft, especially if the Bears end up trading back, will likely consist of two or three of the nation’s top quarterbacks. While C.J. Stroud, Bryce Young, and Will Levis will 99.99% end up someplace besides Chicago, the Bears may be able to trade out of the quarterback region of the draft and still find an elite player anywhere in the top 10 or 12 picks.

Taking quarterbacks out of the equation, there are 10 very intriguing prospects (and one honorable mention) who could not only fill a position of need for the Chicago Bears but could also walk into the locker room as a day-one starter.

1) Jalen Carter, DT – Georgia

At 6’3″ and 310 lbs, Jalen Carter has been one of the most dominant defensive players in college football since earning a starting role in 2021. Statistically speaking, Carter’s college resume actually leaves some production to be desired. He only had six sacks and 67 total tackles over the past two seasons, but as a prospect, the Georgia lineman is one of the best in recent memory.

Carter has the technique, athleticism, and motor to cause disruption in the opponent’s backfield in both the run and pass game. With his size, Carter essentially demands double teams in the run game and is an incredibly active player for a defensive tackle. Georgia has played Carter all across the line the past two seasons, from nose tackle to a 5-technique, but he is a prototypical 3-technique in most NFL schemes.

In Chicago’s 4-3 defense, Carter’s work between the guard and center should allow for every other player across the defensive line to get one-on-one looks as the Georgia product would likely have to get double-teamed. Carter is debatably the best defensive player in this year’s draft class, and maybe the best player overall, but he is certainly the best fit for this Bears’ rebuild, as the front office may look to build from the inside out. He will almost certainly be a top five pick this year and could warrant a top 3 selection.

NFL Comp: Jeffrey Simmons