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My master plan for the 2013 Chicago Bears draft

If I were Chicago Bears general manager Phil Emery, I know exactly what I would do with my first three picks in the 2013 NFL Draft — assuming the board fell in my favor, of course. What exactly would I do if I were the man in charge? Here is my master plan.

College teammates Barrett Jones and Chance Warmack could help give Chicago a dominant offensive line.

College teammates Barrett Jones and Chance Warmack could help give the Chicago Bears a dominant offensive line.

The perfect plan

Guard

In Round 1 one of the top two guards—Jonathan Cooper or Chance Warmack out of North Carolina—falls to me at pick 20. Most mock drafts have both of them currently going before this, but guards have a tendency to drop in the draft, just as Stanford’s David DeCastro last year, when he was the first guard off the board with the 24th pick. Either Cooper or Warmack will be able to instantly step in to the starting lineup and lock down a guard spot with above-average play.

Center

Then I look to add a center in Round 2: Alabama’s Barrett Jones, California’s Brian Schwenke, and Travis Frederick out of Wisconsin are all possibilities.

North Carolina guard Jonathan Cooper would also be an excellent option in round one.

North Carolina guard Jonathan Cooper would be an excellent option for the Chicago Bears in round one.

Jones, an All-American center last year, is my top choice due to his incredible versatility; he played very well at all five offensive line spots during his time in college. He was getting late first-round consideration in early mock drafts, but his stock has slipped, at least according to pundits, due to a Lisfranc injury that has prevented him from working out. Popular mock drafter Walter Cherepinsky has Jones falling all the way to the fourth round in his latest mock, but that seems unlikely for a player who projects as a regular Pro-Bowl caliber interior lineman when healthy.

It is possible, however, that the injury (and lack of pre-draft workouts for teams) will enable him to fall to Chicago with the 50th pick. Former NFL scout and current NFL Network draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah recently said he expects Jones to be a late second- or early third-round pick, which makes him a very realistic option for the Bears here.

Burner

In Round 4 I draft a talented deep threat. The Bears don’t need a star player, just a solid complementary piece who can be a third or fourth receiver and make defenses respect his downfield speed. Players worthy of consideration here include Ryan Swope, Marquise Goodwin, and Kenny Stills.

Results

With top-shelf player at each position, the Bears suddenly have a very good—and young—offensive line in Jermon Bushrod at left tackle, Cooper or Warmack at left guard, Jones (or Schwenke or Frederick) at center, Matt Slauson at right guard, and J’Marcus Webb (or Gabe Carimi or Jonathan Scott) at right tackle. One of Chicago’s best offensive linemen in 2012 at left tackle, Webb is now their worst starter and playing the easier (and less important) right tackle position. This revamped unit becomes a boon both to the running and the passing games.

Adding another weapon to a receiving corps already stocked with wideouts Brandon Marshall, Alshon Jeffery, and Earl Bennett; tight end Martellus Bennett; and running back Matt Forte would give quarterback Jay Cutler a plethora of pass catchers who can help make their passing offense much more diverse than it was last year.

A speedy receiver like Marquise Goodwin would bring balance to Chicago's receiving core.

A speedy receiver like Marquise Goodwin would bring balance to Chicago’s receiving core.

Caveats

Although this is somewhat of a risky plan, in that it completely ignores defensive needs at linebacker and cornerback until Round 5, it puts the best possible team on the field for 2013. Moreover, it sets the offense up for years to come, assuming Emery does not feel the need to replace Cutler after this year.

The problem is that it is highly dependent on the right players being available in the early rounds. If Cooper and Warmack are both gone by pick 20, it’s doubtful Chicago will give serious consideration to any other offensive linemen. In that event, they would like to trade down or possibly consider a linebacker, pass rusher, or cornerback. Likewise, there are no centers outside of Jones, Frederick, or Schwenke who would be worthy of a second-round pick, although a few guards could be enticing if the Bears fail to land one in the first round.

Conclusion

This seems highly unlikely to be the path the Chicago Bears actually take in the 2013 draft. But it is an appetizing thought to fans who have suffered through a solid decade of offensive incompetence. Suddenly, at least on paper, the team that has been so bad on offense for so long would look like a very formidable unit with no glaring weaknesses, something that has not been said about the Bears in my lifetime.

What say you, WCSN readers? Would you make similar moves to these if you were in charge, or do you have a better plan?

931 comments
guest65
guest65

I think you are spot on.  The offensive line become a plus would be big.  I believe in Cutler.  I saw him play some remarkable games where he carried the team.   He has had a lot of pressure due to the O line and weak receivers.   If those days are over then Cutler will be pro-bowl caliber.  The defense however, will be rebuilding, at least a bit, with the loss of Urlacher and the normal aging any team goes through.

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

Half the problem with ranking college football, is that they rank them prior to the season. The first ranking shouldn't come out prior to week six or week 8.

Another issue is the conferences themselves. It is all about money. If you truly wanted a more representative sample, get rid of conferences all together. Have every team play a national schedule.

LaCW
LaCW

What time is rhis blogs mock? 2 pm ct?

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

i still think with the college football playoff they should go all in 16 teams, the 12 conference winners, the division 1-aa champion, the division 2 champs, the division 3 champs, and 1 wildcard for the highest rated non-conference winner 

AndrewLeT
AndrewLeT

"We decided to call the playoff what it is -- the College Football Playoff," BCS executive director Bill Hancock said.

 oh how original.  

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

oooooh ESPN gave me a birthday present 

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

Lions off season arrests are up to 2. The season is approaching!

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

There is speculation that the Bears might be interested in Justin Pugh. He is a tackle, but is projected to move inside at the next level.

Prit
Prit

@First job: Beat the Packers I can go with that, but with so many teams, How do you keep your rivalries, and do you make it normal for east/west coast teams traveling across country? And how do you schedule? One year you play the west, next the midwest, then the east? 

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

Anybody that wants to get in this debate, and has anything to say about the "student athlete", might as well pack your bags and go home.

Prit
Prit

@Aciddragon  No... This isn't March Madness. Put the best 8 teams in there, let em go at it.  Maybe even 10.  All the Major BCS bowls, Sugar, Fiesta, Rose, Orange BCS Nat'l Ship.  Get rid of those, have a 10 team tournament/playoff...

AndrewLeT
AndrewLeT

@Aciddragon or just make four power conferences.  keep the conference tournaments as round one of the playoffs and then have the two rounds that follow. 

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

@andylet445 

I saw a tweet that said they could have called it the "SEC invitational"

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

@jwoude23 Bear Down 

Those bastards probably saw our Puppy bowl Primer and stole the idea. They are trying to corner the market on "cute" sports!

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

@Prit @First job: Beat the Packers 

That can all be worked out. I'm an ND fan, so I won't deny some bias, but they deal with this every year. They manage to schedule games with teams from every major conference.


aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

@Prit the problem is, is that who picks the teams? will they be unbiased? ect. they only fair way to do it is to let each conference champion have a chance, then 4 wild card teams, but i like my idea of the 1-aa, D2, and D3 champions and the highest rated non-winner of a conference 

Prit
Prit

@Aciddragon  @Prit No doubt, the only opinion I have on these NCAA heads, is that they're money hungry asses, who lost all common sense long ago.  

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

@Prit i'm sure they'll think of something, but right now with the credibility issues with the BCS and the NCAA, the last thing they can rely on is the people currently in place. they need to at the very least look to be fair and inclusive, for the people to buy it 

Prit
Prit

@Aciddragon  @Prit That is a problem, because humans are naturally biased, and computers can't take into account everything.  But sure they can come up with something. 

Prit
Prit

@andylet445 @Prit @Aciddragon  That's a 50/50, if you're a Miami Hurricane and start out unranked, but go 10-0 you'll be in the top 8. A smaller school prolly not. But look at ND last year. Hadn't been "good" for years, but had a great year, and back in the spotlight and made it to the Nat'l Ship. 

AndrewLeT
AndrewLeT

@Prit @andylet445 @Aciddragon which is the problem with the current system.  if you don't rank in the top 25 to start the season you have no chance to make it and could be truly the best team. 

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

@andylet445 say we take your idea of the 4 power conferences. take the top 4 teams in each conference, have them play the first week in December, then have the winners of those game play the second week in December, then have the final 4 the 3rd week of December, then the Championship on New Years day

AndrewLeT
AndrewLeT

@Aciddragon  @andylet445 the only thing that needs to be worked on is the timing of it all.  I think the month break between the conference tourney game and the bowl game is ridiculous. 

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

@andylet445 more of a downsizing thing our numbers got cut by more than half, and i was deemed expendable 

aciddragon
aciddragon moderator

@andylet445 @First job: Beat the Packers  eh it happens, i kinda saw it coming for a couple weeks though so i wasn't completely off guard and was able to prepare accordingly, but it still sucks the way it went down. but i'm thinking about going to see if i can get some government money and go back to school. and if i have to get a crap job somewhere