Evaluating the Bears 2012 draft

Last weekend the Bears made their picks in the 2012 NFL Draft. They drafted a total of 6 players, and they needed help on both the offensive and defensive lines, as well as the secondary. Here are the players they drafted, and here’s how I think the Bears did:

1st Round Pick: Boise State Defensive End/Outside Linebacker Shea McClellin

The Bears drafted him to be an everyday 4-3 defensive end. But most people say that he better suited for a 3-4 outside linebacker pass rush specialist position. McClellin says not only is he capable of playing both, he says he can also contribute on special teams. But McClellin also said that he would be willing to line up in a three point stance every play if he is asked too.

He doesn’t have the size of most 4-3 defensive ends {He’s 6’3″ 260}, but his strength and speed will give him and edge over opposing offensive linemen. At the end of the day, it’s up to him to prove that he can play with the big boys.

2nd Round Pick: South Carolina Wide Receiver Alshon Jeffery

He’s the ideal size for today’s NFL Wide Receivers {6’4″ 230}. His wing span gives him the ability to push past defenders, break tackles, and create space in the open field. His height gives him the advantage to make catches in the face of defenders, over the heads of defenders, and to overpower defenders in mid-air. His weight however has been a concern.

During his college days, his weight fluctuated at times. He lost 10 pounds before he went to this years scouting combine. If he can stay in shape, he can be a legit #3 or #4 receiving option for Jay Cutler.

3rd Round Pick: Oregon State Safety Brandon Hardin

While he did have a solid college career, I’m skeptical about this pick because the last time the Bears drafted a safety from OSU {Al Afalava}, he didn’t finish his rookie season with the Bears and was eventually let go. I hope that this situation will be different.

4th Round Pick: Temple Fullback/Tight End Evan Rodriguez

The Bears may have finally found the “H-Back” that they have been looking for these last couple of seasons. They tried unsuccessfully to do that with Greg Olsen and Desmond Clark. They were able to do that with Brandon Manumaleuma but they relased him. And they tried to convert Matt Spaeth and Kyle Adams into that mold but with mixed results. But this time,  they may finally be able to make the Fullback/Tight End hybrid happen with Evan Rodriguez.

His size, speed, strength, and blocking ability already give him an upper hand. But his ability to open up the passing game makes him even more dangerous. This was probably the Bears second best pick of this years draft.

6th Round Pick: Nevada Cornerback Isaiah Frey

Isaiah Frey is the second smallest player taken by the Bears in this years draft. While he may have had a solid college career, he did so against low level competition by playing in the Western Athletic Conference. Due to his size {or lack there of}, he’s going to have to prove that he can take on the bigger wide receivers in this league.

7th Round Pick: Texas Christian Cornerback Greg McCoy

McCoy was the smallest player that the Bears drafted this year. But they didn’t exactly draft him for his defensive abilities. The Bears drafted Greg McCoy for his potential contributions on special teams. McCoy was mainly used as a kick returner for the Horned Frogs last year. And as the Bears are looking to ease Devin Hester out of the return game, they will need all the help they can get.

Overall, I give the Bears a C grade for this years draft. They could have drafted an offensive lineman at some point. They also could have drafted another safety, they already had plenty of corners before the draft. So now we await for workouts and mini-camps to start.

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