Bears GM Tips Hand on Team’s Draft Plans

Justin Fields

Getty Justin Fields is in need of help at wide receiver.

The 2022 NFL draft kicks off on April 28, and the Chicago Bears have a lot of work to do.

Trouble is, they don’t have a great deal of draft capital to address a multitude of needs that include interior offensive line, wide receiver, cornerback, safety and defensive tackle.

After finishing with a 6-11 mark in 2021, the Bears have the seventh selections in Rounds 2, 3, 5 and 6, and they also have an additional second- and fifth-rounder from previous trades. Here’s a breakdown of where their draft picks stack up currently:

  • Round 2, Pick 39
  • Round 2, Pick 48 (from Los Angeles Charges via Khalil Mack trade)
  • Round 3, Pick 71
  • Round 5, Pick 148 (from Houston Texans via Anthony Miller trade)
  • Round 5, Pick 150
  • Round 6, Pick 185

When speaking with the media at the NFL owners meetings on March 28, Chicago’s new general manager Ryan Poles had some telling comments about his team’s plans for the upcoming draft.

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Poles ‘Would Love’ to Address Need at WR in Round 2

Considering the Bears still haven’t signed a top talent at wide receiver in free agency, it’s looking more and more like they’ll be looking to the draft to shore up that position — and Poles referenced Las Vegas Raiders All-Pro receiver Davante Adams as a prime example of talent that can be found in Round 2.

“I would love to address it on Day 2 (in the second and third rounds), but we’re also going to monitor the guys that are left in free agency,” Poles said, per the team’s official website. “It’s funny because there’s a lot of [outside] panic like, ‘You need receivers.’ I think Davante was taken in the second, right? So, there’s talent there. It’s not always going to be like that. I get it. And we’re going to be patient. If it’s not there, we’re not going to do it and force it either. And this class is pretty deep, so I feel comfortable.”

Poles also hinted he could use one of the team’s first two or three picks to trade down in order to get more capital.

“I’m excited about it,” Poles said about Chicago’s possibilities in the second- and third-rounds of the draft this year. “It puts us in range of really good players. And at the same time, that also allows us to maneuver a little bit. We don’t have a ton of picks, so if there is a way to create more, we’ll be open to that.”

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What Will Poles Be Looking for in Young Players?

Poles said he’ll be looking for a lot of traits, but he wants to add playmakers above all else.

“I will say one of the benefits of the combine is you get to see some of the physical traits as well — what sets them apart,” Poles told Kevin Fishbain of The Athletic at the scouting combine in March. “Is it size? Is it length? Is it explosion? Is it speed? We’ll put all that together. But I would say that all boils down just to being a playmaker.”

“They come in different shapes and sizes and speeds,” Poles added. “I think it comes down to playmakers. I think we saw that in the Super Bowl. Guys that can make plays when their number is called, and that’s what we look for, and you can see that on college tape.”

The Bears have been linked to former Cincinnati wideout Alec Pierce, and the word ‘playmaker’ certainly applies to him:

We’ll see what happens, but Pierce is a definite name to watch for the Bears on Day 2.

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