3 reasons Chicago Bears took Darnell Wright over Broderick Jones
2. Darnell Wright Is safer in pass protection
As we noted, the experience level leans toward Darnell Wright. Steelers fans will be quick to note that the upside may belong to Broderick Jones because he has not had as many chances to learn from his mistakes. However, when you look at Jones and look at Wright there are clear strengths and weaknesses that differ from their skills.
Broderick Jones is a walking highlight reel as a run blocker. When he gets out in space he is dangerous, and he can clear huge rush lanes, and also spring explosive runs. On the flip side, he struggles in pass protection. Some of it comes down to a lack of experience, but he does have technical issues, especially in the bend he presents from his lower body.
Darnell Wright can look clumsy at times when he is asked to climb to the second level. He brings power in the run game, but he is just not the mover in space, especially in comparison to Jones. On the flip side, he has nearly perfect technique in pass protection. Here and there a rusher can get around the edge on him, but his drop steps in pass protection are pristine, and he has consistent balance. Beyond that, his hand placement is excellent and he can bury defenders by swatting them into the ground like flies.
There are two ways to look at this. First, Wright can improve as a run blocker, but being able to pick up linebackers at the second level is a nice skill set, but not a necessary skill set. He will not be a liability as a run blocker, especially if the scheme plays to his strength.
It is fair to argue that Broderick Jones just needs experience, but also it is easier to teach anyone to move forward than backward, and that counts extra for big men. That is why the linemen who can pass protect are valued higher than the top run blockers with pass protection issues.
So, the Chicago Bears went with the best pass-protecting lineman in the class with the thought that it may be easier to improve in the run game, but if not, it also is not a killer. The fact that he also plays right tackle made it an easier call.