The latest mock draft from NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah, one of the more well-respected draft analysts in the business, has the Chicago Bears making a terrible mistake in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft.
Jeremiah has the Bears taking Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter with the No. 1 overall pick.
I’m sure the Bears would love to trade out of this pick. If that option isn’t available — or the offers fail to meet their asking price — Carter would be an immediate difference-maker on all three downs.
The issue here isn’t the player — Carter is exactly who I think the Bears should be targeting in the draft (or Alabama edge rusher Will Anderson).
The issue is taking him at No. 1 overall. I won’t give Jeremiah a hard time over this because he does mention that Chicago would prefer to trade the pick.
However, I just don’t see a scenario in which Chicago doesn’t make a trade.
It’s inevitable that two quarterbacks are going to go at the top of the draft. Alabama’s Bryce Young and Ohio State’s CJ Stroud are far and away the best quarterback prospects in this draft. And with numerous teams needing a quarterback, there will be no shortage of teams interested in trading for the No. 1 pick.
Now, it’s certainly possible that Chicago doesn’t get the compensation they want for the pick. But regardless, they should be able to get something out of a quarterback-needy team looking to move up. At worst, they could make a deal with the Houston Texans (who pick at No. 2) for a smaller trade package. Houston could move up one spot to ensure that no one else trades ahead of them and they get the quarterback they prefer. The Bears would get some extra picks and still land Carter.
The ideal scenario would be to trade down to No. 4 with the Indianapolis Colts, another quarterback-needy team. Chicago could net some extra picks and draft either Anderson or Carter (whichever one the Arizona Cardinals don’t take).
It’s hard to see Bears general manager Ryan Poles not making a move with the No. 1 pick — I can’t imagine he’d be alright with selecting a player at No. 1 that’s going to fall to No. 3 or No. 4.
I’d give Jeremiah’s scenario an extremely small chance of happening.
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