Dec 9, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Chicago Bears helmet against the Minnesota Vikings at the Metrodome. The Vikings defeated the Bears 21-14. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Who Will Chicago Bears Take In NFL Draft If B.P.A?

“Best Player Available” is often a phrase associated with NFL draft strategies and something the Chicago Bears will consider.  If they hold that strategy for their defense in the first round, who are they most likely to take?

Aaron Donald – DT – Pitt

Top Expert Grades

NFL.com – 6.3/10

CBS Sports – #13 out 1000

ESPN – #14 of Top 32

Scout Inc. – #10 of Top 32

Aaron Donald is a dynamic penetrator at defensive tackle out of Pitt.  He thrives when shooting gaps, having the leverage, explosion and quickness to beat blockers and terrorize quarterbacks.

Anthony Barr – OLB – UCLA

Top Expert Grades

NFL.com – 6.5/10

CBS Sports – #12 out 1000

ESPN – #15 of Top 32

Scout Inc. – #30 of Top 32

He’s only been playing outside linebacker for a couple years but Anthony Barr is already one of the best pass rushers in this NFL draft.  He has great length and ability to get around the edge along with an underrated power base.  Has the frame to bulk up.

Justin Gilbert – CB – Oklahoma State

Top Expert Grades

NFL.com – 6.4/10

CBS Sports – #10 out 1000

ESPN – #18 of Top 32

Scout Inc. – #21 of Top 32

A freak of an athlete coming out of OklahomaState, Justin Gilbert has that shutdown corner potential teams drool over.  He’s also a proven return man who can take it to the house.  Needs more refinement in his technique but the ceiling is sky high.

C.J. Mosley – LB – Alabama

Top Expert Grades

NFL.com – 6.4/10

CBS Sports – #22 out 1000

ESPN – #9 of Top 32

Scout Inc. – #8 of Top 32

Not only is he a classic inside linebacker with the toughness, tackling ability and leadership intangibles, but C.J. Mosley has those rare additions of athleticism, speed and instincts that make him a truly special player provided he can stay healthy.

Calvin Pryor – FS – Louisville

Top Expert Grades

NFL.com – 6.3/10

CBS Sports – #20 out 1000

ESPN – #22 of Top 32

Scout Inc. – #20 of Top 32

Most free safeties are known for their coverage ability but Calvin Pryor isn’t there yet.  He’s best known for his aggressive style, fierce hitting, good tackling and blitzing ability.  The range and instincts are there to improve in coverage, but it will take some work.

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix – FS – Alabama

Top Expert Grades

NFL.com – 6.0/10

CBS Sports – #17 out 1000

ESPN – #20 of Top 32

Scout Inc. – #12 of Top 32

Ha Ha Clinton-Dix is definitely more the traditional free safety.  He has the best coverage skills of anybody in the NFL draft, looking very natural and athletic in open space.  There are some rough areas to his game but all around he could start right away for any team.

Final Analysis

Matt Miller, the draft expert of the Bleacher Report stated the Chicago Bears were likely to go after the best player available regardless of position at #14.  Based on that line of thinking and the data extrapolated above it appears that it will come down to either defensive tackle Aaron Donald or linebacker C.J. Mosley.  Donald was probably the most consistent of the top prospects, placing inside the top 15 on most big boards and scoring a solid 6.3 from NFL.com.  Mosley meanwhile placed in the top 10 for two of those boards and scored a slightly better 6.4 at NFL.com.  It was the CBS ranking of #22 that hurt his number the most, likely due to lingering injury concerns.

From the perspective of the Chicago Bears, one would rate defensive tackle above linebacker in terms of position needs.  So if Donald and Mosley were that close on the front office’s board, then Donald likely has to be the pick with Mosley as the backup if he isn’t there at #14.  After that it would go Justin Gilbert, Anthony Barr, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and finally Calvin Pryor.  Obviously there is no guarantee to this but it does offer some interesting insight to how things might shake out if the Bears indeed take that Best Player Available approach.

Tags: Aaron Donald Anthony Barr C.j. Mosley Calvin Pryor Chicago Bears Ha Ha Clinton-dix Justin Gilbert NFL Draft

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