The Chicago Bears had several needs to address with their limited capital, and for the most part, they succeeded. Coming into the draft their biggest needs were Offensive Line, Tight End, and adding to their Secondary. The Bears checked off each box, though the order left more to be desired.
Bears fans got their annual reminder in the first round this year for their Khalil Mack trade. Social media accounts troll the Raiders by saying the Bears didn’t draft anyone, but they still have Khalil Mack. At some point, that might get old if he can’t stay healthy enough to produce what fans know he can. After some time waiting, the Bears were finally on the clock for the 2020 Draft during day two.
Cole Kmet – TE (Notre Dame)
Arguably the best TE in the draft class, seeing Kmet get selected was great. Fun fact that you may not know. The Bears had nine TE’s on their roster before the draft even began, and with Kmet pick, they hit double-digits. Despite all of that, the Bears had the second-lowest production from TE in the league last season. To say they were garbage is stating it lightly as the Trey Burton experiment failed miserably. Kmet fits the bill and gives Mitchell Trubisky a needed weapon stretching the field.
Jaylon Johnson – CB (Utah)
This guy has the potential to be something great for the Bears. While they didn’t specifically need to go after a corner. Fan reaction was mixed on this pick, mostly due to Johnson being injured with a torn labrum in 2018. That wasn’t made public until prior to spring of 2019, as even Johnson didn’t know he sustained it. He still put up remarkable numbers while dealing with his shoulder. Knowing the Bears’ history with staying healthy, it’s nice to know Johnson can possibly play through it, not that I’d ever wish it to happen.
Trevis Gipson – OLB (Tulsa)
From a franchise perspective, the Bears are known for their defense. The past handful of years, they’ve added key players and brought that Monsters of the Midway, back to light. Gipson should fit right in with the Bears, who’ve had their successes with past linebackers they’ve drafted. In his last season at Tulsa, Gipson had 15 tackles for loss and eight sacks. Nick Kwiatkowski didn’t make the cut following last season, which allows Gipson to potentially slide in and get some starting reps if he slides over to inside backer.
Kindle Vildor – CB (Georgia Southern)
This was an interesting pick by Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy, opting to select yet another corner. Then again, at this point, any pick that wasn’t a guard or tackle was a little surprising. Kindle Vildor isn’t known for his tackling abilities, but he can disrupt and break-up passes, finishing his collegiate career with nine picks. He’s more of an athlete and might get time on special teams while also serving as depth in the secondary.
Darnell Mooney – WR (Tulane)
I didn’t know about this guy until I saw his highlight reel, and it’s impressive. Darnell Mooney will give the Bears a speed-demon that they don’t already have. Traditionally, Chicago has targeted lanky receivers who can high-point the ball and bring down anything in the vicinity. For his size (5′-10″) Mooney can still get up for contested catches. He doesn’t have much of a frame for a pro and does have issues with dropping passes, but he could be a gem in the next couple of seasons.
Arlington Hambright – OT (Colorado) & Lachavious Simmons – OG (Tennessee State)
There’s not much to say because there’s not much out there about these two. Better late than never for Pace and Nagy as they saved themselves from being thrown into the fire for not adding linemen. While players selected this late don’t often get an opportunity to start. Considering how important they are to the organization, Hambright and Simmons should get a solid chance at starting for Chicago.
Grade: B- (Overall the Bears addressed their need for players on the line, but selecting players this late leaves more to be desired. Hopefully these two can prove the doubters wrong and make an impact right away)
Overall Grade: B
I find it so difficult to be able to grade how good a draft class is simply from looking at tape and hearing analysis. Too many times, the Bears have drafted someone highly, only to see them struggle with injuries and become busts. Nagy and Pace were able to fill their needs with the limited amount of picks, so props to them. I would’ve liked to see a safety drafted in place of their second corner, and getting one or two lineman earlier in the draft.
The Bears have also signed a handful of UDFA’s (Unsigned Drafted Free Agents). While they lost out on the QB sweepstakes with Anthony Gordon (signed with Seattle), they have made good signings. Of note, the Bears signed Khalil Mack’s younger brother Ledarius Mack from Buffalo. They’ve also signed a TE/WR combo in Ahmad Wagner from Kentucky, Artavis Pierce (running back) from Oregon State, two more offensive linemen, and two more defensive presences.