Grading every rookie from the Chicago Bears 2022 NFL Draft
Chicago Bears Pick No. 168: Braxton Jones, OT
The offensive line was considered one of Ryan Poles’ specialties as a scout. A former offensive lineman himself, Poles had developed a reputation as an elite talent scout at the position. Braxton Jones, out of Utah State, marked the first of several offensive linemen the Bears selected on day three.
To the average fan, little was known about Jones. He dominated the lower-level competition in college and was a pretty solid athlete. At 6’7 310 pounds, he also possessed the massive frame the Bears had been looking for. Jones was one of the better rookie tackles in pro football in 2022. He finished with a 74.5 Pro Football Focus (PFF) grade, with a 70.5 pass-blocking grade and a 79.4 run-blocking grade.
With that said, there are still several areas for improvement. The first being discipline play, as Jones was flagged 12 times, which was the fourth most in the entire league. Additionally, Jones gave up seven total sacks, and while some of the blame resides on both Justin Fields for not getting rid of the ball quickly and the wide receivers for not getting open, it’s hard to completely exonerate Jones.
A common theme among Bears offensive linemen, Jones was a substantially better run blocker than a pass blocker. There were too many moving parts in the 2022 Bears offense to know exactly what Jones is. But for a fifth-round pick who was thrown into the fire on day one and was frequently matched up one-on-one with some of the top pass rushers the league has to offer, his rookie year should be considered a success.