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Bears mock draft: Ryan Poles bolsters trenches after Justin Fields, Keenan Allen trades

Bears mock draft: Ryan Poles bolsters trenches after Justin Fields, Keenan Allen trades originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The Bears were one of the busiest teams in the NFL this week as they made two headline-grabbing trades and continued to fill out their roster through free agency. Sending Justin Fields to the Steelers and bringing in star wide receiver Keenan Allen from the Chargers sent shockwaves through the league, but lesser-heralded moves like signing center Coleman Shelton could be just as impactful when the regular season rolls around.

Given all that’s happened, it stands to reason that the Bears’ draft priorities have changed. Namely, how do they acquire more picks?

As things stand, the Bears only have four selections this year. But GM Ryan Poles is no stranger to draft day deals, so that could change. Here’s a mock draft where he’s as active as ever.

As always, this mock draft is not an attempt to predict what the Bears will actually do when they’re back in the War Room next offseason. That’s impossible. Nor is it meant as a recommendation of what the Bears should do. This mock draft is meant to be a fun way to discuss wild ideas, dig into some of the intriguing college prospects this season, and project how those players may fit in Chicago.

The Fields trade ensures the Bears will draft a rookie QB. The Bears still need to see Williams’ medical info and need to spend more time with him in private meetings. Barring any surprises there, he’ll be the pick. Williams’ college tape is as good as it gets.

For all our coverage on the QB phenom, click here.

TRADE! BEARS SEND NO. 9 PICK, 2025 SIXTH-ROUND PICK TO SAINTS FOR NOS. 14, 45, 168 PICKS.

With plenty of top-level talent still available, Poles uses the opportunity to move back a few spots to recoup a few picks. The Saints take stud right tackle Taliese Fuaga to better protect Derek Carr.

TRADE! BEARS SEND NO. 14 PICK TO DOLPHINS FOR NOS. 21, 55 PICKS

Brock Bowers is still on the board and tempts Poles. But with Gerald Everett on board now, the Bears feel good enough about their tight end room to add yet another second-round pick.

NO. 21: LAIATU LATU – EDGE – UCLA

Defensive end is the biggest position of need for the Bears heading into the draft (outside quarterback), so they use their second first-round pick to add a guy who put up huge numbers in college. Scouts love how Latu uses exceptional technique to shed blocks, and note his quick play speed. Latu never quits on a play, which is a prerequisite for Eberflus’ program. In addition, Latu can kick inside to rush over the tackle or from the b-gap, and the Bears love that kind of versatility. Latu’s 26.2% win rate on pass rushes was No. 2 in the country among players with at least 100 pass rush snaps. Over the last two seasons, he had 23.5 sacks, 34 TFL and five forced fumbles.

NO. 45: ADISA ISAAC – EDGE – PENN STATE

The Bears had their eye on a wide receiver with this pick, but a run at the position led to a change in plans. So Poles double dips with a second athletic defensive end. Isaac is known as a great run defender who sets the edge. Last season his 0.7-yard average depth of tackle was tied for 12th-best in the nation among edge players with at least 10 run defense tackles. His 10.7% stop rate in the run game was 19th-best among players with at least 100 run defense snaps. Isaac can pressure the QB too. Since 2022 he has 11.5 sacks and 27 TFL.

NO. 55: RUKE ORHORHORO – DEFENSIVE LINEMAN – CLEMSON

With Justin Jones headed to the Cardinals, the Bears need to refill on the interior of the line. Orhorhoro doesn’t get the same attention as Johnny Newton or T’Vondre Sweat do, but he checks several boxes for Matt Eberflus and the Bears defense. First, he’s equally effective defending the run as he is rushing the passer. Second, he’s got a good motor and makes plays in pursuit. If Orhorhoro isn’t the first player to the ball, he’s usually not far behind and doesn’t quit on the play. Finally, he’s a versatile player who can line up practically anywhere on the defensive line. For the most part, Orhorhoro lined up in the b-gap for the Tigers, but he played nose tackle and even some defensive end. Eberflus loves players he can move around the formation and values the flexibility those types of players bring to the table.

NO. 75: MALACHI CORLEY – WIDE RECEIVER – WESTERN KENTUCKY

The Bears have looked for explosive wide receivers in the past two drafts without much immediate success, but with DJ Moore and Keenan Allen both in tow the team can afford to take another shot. Draft experts note that Corley is a bit raw as a route runner, but he’s a certified playmaker with the ball in his hands. In three seasons at Western Kentucky, Corley caught 253 passes for 2,968 yards and 29 touchdowns. He led the nation with 975 yards after the catch and 40 missed tackles forced. At this year’s Senior Bowl, where we know the Bears love to gather info, Corley was voted the National Team’s top wide receiver by his DB teammates.

NO. 122: ROGER ROSENGARTEN – RIGHT TACKLE – WASHINGTON

The Bears seemingly have their starting tackles in place with Braxton Jones and Darnell Wright, but they could use some improved depth. Rosengarten boasts an elite “Relative Athletic Score” thanks to his excellent agility, explosion and speed. That’s exactly what the Bears want in linemen. In two years as a starter for the Huskies, he never gave up a sack per PFF.

NO. 168: LUKE MCCAFFERY – WIDE RECEIVER – RICE

McCaffery has an exemplary football pedigree, following in the footsteps of his brother Christian and his father Ed. He’s an excellent athlete in his own right, too. He’s got good size (6’2”, 198 lbs), great hands (4.1% drop rate, 60.7% contested catch rate per PFF) and impressive production (129 catches, 1,715 yards, 19 TDs since 2022). All of that is even more remarkable when you consider he only started playing the position two years ago. McCaffery began his college career as a quarterback at Nebraska in 2019, left for Rice in 2021 where he once again competed for a starting QB job, before finally transitioning to WR in 2022.

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