The weeks leading up to the NFL Draft sure are a crazy time.
A few days ago, Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller reported that an executive thinks that it’s a lock that the Chicago Bears will pick a defensive back with the No. 3 pick:
One executive is “99 percent sure” the Chicago #Bears will wind up with a defensive back in Round 1. ( Via Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller)
— Chicago Sports News (@ChiSportUpdates) April 15, 2017
But just one day later, news came out from CBS Sports that a quarterback is expected to be the pick:
Many around the league expect #Bears to draft the first QB at No. 3 overall Trubisky and Watson being the likely candidates. ( CBS Sports)
— Chicago Sports News (@ChiSportUpdates) April 16, 2017
The media seems to be sending mixed messages to Bears fans, as is the norm around this time of year.
If the Bears do decide to pick a quarterback with the No. 3 pick, there will be a fair share of pros and cons. Let’s take a look at those right now, shall we?
The team’s current starting quarterback is Mike Glennon, who is a serviceable starter for the time being. However, it’s clear that he is not the long-term answer at the position. Their best bet is to draft a quarterback early and have him sit for a year as he develops. After some time, the Bears could cut or trade Glennon and have a long-term replacement (whoever it may be) at hand.
It’s also likely that Chicago will have the best quarterback on their board available for them. Cleveland is likely to select Myles Garrett, while San Francisco will probably go defense at No. 2. That means that, whether their top quarterback is Mitchell Trubisky, Deshaun Watson or someone else, the Bears will be in a great spot to pick a quarterback.
If you look at the teams that made it to the playoffs this year, almost all of them had quality starters at quarterbacks. Having someone like Tom Brady, Matt Ryan or Aaron Rodgers manning the helm does wonders to your team as a whole. The Bears’ lack of playoff success in recent years can be attributed to many factors, but poor quarterback production is arguably the biggest. Reliability at that position would help Chicago get one step closer to the playoffs.
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However, selecting a quarterback in the first round has its downsides, as well.
Chicago has plenty of other needs that they could fix at No. 3. No quarterback in this class is a top-three talent, whereas there are safeties and cornerbacks that are. In fact, Trubisky, my top quarterback, is only No. 14 on my big board. If the Bears were to pick him or another signal-caller, they’d be missing out on Pro Bowl-caliber talent.
Chicago is not in a good position to reach for need, regardless of how important that need is. They were very active in free agency, but they lacked to solve any needs long-term. Jamal Adams, Malik Hooker and Marshon Lattimore would all be better value picks and would all fit big needs. You can even make an argument that O.J. Howard fits into this category with the other three.
By selecting a quarterback, they’d be passing up on a safer pick at another position and taking a bigger risk. Given that John Fox is entering his third year as head coach with the Bears, it’s unlikely that he would want to wait for his first-round pick to play. Otherwise, he could be out of a job come January.
However, it is pretty obvious that Chicago desperately needs a long-term answer at quarterback. And given that a good quarterback is typically necessary to make the playoffs, they might not pass up a chance to grab one.
Time will tell whether they pick a quarterback or not. Until Draft Day though, it looks like the rest of us will just have to wait and see.
– Jacob Infante is a National Editor for cover32 and also covers the Chicago Bears. He can be followed on Twitter @jacobinfante24.