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How Minicamp Shows Chicago Bears’ Draft Needs

The Chicago Bears ended their voluntary minicamp. There was some heat on Justin Fields as he ended camp struggling but had a solid first and second day.

I don’t need to give you my player-by-player takeaways; it’s April. I want to discuss how this minicamp has helped us understand what the Chicago Bears will do in the draft this week.

The Bears started and ended minicamp with Teven Jenkins at right tackle and Larry Borom at left tackle. Sam Mustipher continued to play right guard. Many have viewed him as a center-only player, but he will need to be able to play all the interior positions for him to have value.

Jaylon Johnson was a no-show along with Robert Quinn. That helped younger players get more time to understand the new coach and playbook.

Roquan Smith and Nichols Marrow look great together. Matt Eberflus shared how having position versatility is a bonus. Using Marrow and Smith in multiple linebacker positions adds to the defensive scheme.

How does this information help understand what the Chicago Bears will do in the draft? Follow the money. The Chicago Bears invested in center and attempted to upgrade the guard position in free agency. They added a 3-tech in Justin Jones.

Thomas Graham was not in the starting lineup at the cornerback position. As much as Graham showed potential towards the end of the season, it was Kindle Vildor and Duke Shelley.

What Will The Chicago Bears Do In The Draft?

Wide receiver, safety, linebacker, cornerback, and guard are the positions that have been heavily scouted and band-aided for now. When you hear that Bryon Pringle, Morrow, and Deandre Houston-Carson have been the standouts among the band-aids, it tells us that the coaches are noticing.

The draft board is ultimately set and has been for a while. Only minor adjustments are being made based on what the coaches have seen in minicamp.

With Mustipher starting at guard, that position seems highly needed on the draft board. Even more than a receiver. The cornerback position is another position that lacks talent. Jaylon Johnson being away from the camp showed that what do the Chicago Bears truly have without him?

Ryan Poles understands his team isn’t set and should know that cornerback and offensive guard should be at the top of the list. Luckily for the Bears, those are two positions with depth and value in the second round.

Eberflus discussed how he plans to rotate defensive line players like a hockey rotation. With Robert Quinn and Al-Quadin Muhammad away from camp, the edge consists of Travis Gibson and Sam Kamara. Luckily both veteran players are expected to start.

The tier of need should be:

  1. cornerback and guard

  2. safety

  3. wide receiver and defensive tackle

  4. linebacker

  5. edge and tight end

When I compare it to what I had back in January, that is an interesting order. Justin Fields needs the talent to throw the ball to, but this team needs to get better at those key positions to take back the North. 

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