For months fans have sat by and wondered what the Chicago Bears have planned for the 2014 NFL draft. Slowly but surely they are getting some answers.
Phil Emery states the medical history and evaluations are key
The only predictable thing about Phil Emery through two years as team general manager is that he’s unpredictable. Indeed despite a rather fresh approach of honesty and openness, to a point of course, the veteran front office man keeps finding ways to surprise fans and experts alike. So with the draft in May approaching fast, the time has come again for him to ask questions about his philosophy regarding the scouting combine and what he looks for at the event and what he values the most. Normally it would be the standard answers but there was one comment the GM made that should be circled very carefully. Emery stated that above anything else he thinks medical history and evaluations are one of the most vital pieces to the scouting process. It is highly important that a team has a complete idea of where the health is for a given prospect, regardless of their past accomplishments and future potential. It’s not a big revelation but one that warrants careful examination. Aside from one or two exceptions Emery has stuck to this doctrine and it could help narrow down the pool of prospects on the short list for May.
Louis Nix and Dominique Easley might not make the cut
Chicago has needs all across their defensive depth chart but most experts agree that their biggest issues lay on the defensive line, particularly the tackle positions. Nearly every mock draft of any notoriety has the Bears taking a defensive tackle in the first round. The two most popular names to come up in recent weeks are FloridaState standout Timmy Jernigan and Notre Dame middle man Louis Nix. Jernigan has few health issues of note aside from his rather unusual disappearance for a stretch during the national championship game, later explained to be illness related. On the other hand Nix didn’t have the best 2013 and a source of the problem was tied to some troubles with his knee that required surgery. Given his 340-lbs frame, problems with the lower extremities warrants careful examination. Then there is Florida defensive tackle Dominique Easley. Scouts considered him one of, if not THE best lineman in the country early in the season until his suffered his second torn ACL injury. Despite such obvious skill and promise those injuries are going to give many teams pause. It’s safe say that based on his comments, those two players can be safely crossed off the list for the 2014 NFL draft in a few months.
Thus the Chicago Bears plan becomes a little clearer.