There is an old adage (there are rarely ever any new ones, are there?) that suggests the best things come in pairs.
And if the Chicago Bears drafted LSU safety Jamal Adams and Colorado cornerback Chidobe Awuzie, the best could be yet to come for a secondary that’s desperately in need of some good news.
Bucky Brooks and Daniel Jeremiah have been trying to put together the best possible pick scenarios for each team’s first two selections in the upcoming NFL Draft. And considering the Bears’ needs at safety and cornerback, Adams and Awuzie seem like two perfect fits for the team’s first two picks.
No matter where you look, you’ll see Adams and Awuzie at or near the top of their respective pre-draft position rankings.
Even though Jeremiah doesn’t have a quarterback among his top-25 prospects, Adams checks in as the second best player of this draft class and the top safety. Pro Football Focus’ top-101 prospects puts Adams as the draft’s fourth best prospect, and top safety overall. CBS Sports ranks Adams as the top strong safety and the third best player overall. Not impressed yet? Maybe running the 40-yard dash in the 4.3 range at LSU’s recent pro day will sway you even more.
In this exercise, Brooks sends Adams to the Bears with the third overall pick. He believes Adams represents everything the Bears need out of the third pick, calling him a game-changer because he possesses everything from top-notch leadership skills, to the ability to play against the run in-the-box, and the athleticism to defend the pass.
In Round 2, Jeremiah plucks Awuzie to bring some youth and upside to the Bears’ mix of cornerbacks. While CBS Sports projects Awuzie to be picked in either the first or second round as the sixth-rated cornerback and 38th best player in this draft, PFF has him as the 12th best cornerback and 60th overall prospect.
And while the team has added depth with the signings of Prince Amukamara, Marcus Cooper, and B.W. Webb, the new additions are high floor, low ceiling players. And only Cooper signed a multi-year deal. Jeremiah believes Awuzie can play every position in the secondary, giving the Bears the kind of versatility defensive coordinator Vic Fangio craves out of his defenders.
Put Awuzie with Adams in the secondary, and there are two building blocks for a brighter day.