Full-scale rebuilds seem to be all the rage on the Chicago sports scene.
News of the Chicago Bulls’ draft day maneuvering that sent all-star Jimmy Butler (and the 16th pick in the draft) to the Minnesota Timberwolves for the seventh pick and two players rocked the NBA, but also put the Chicago Bears’ draft weekend moves into some perspective.
Neither move was popular, but both were necessary in a way. The Bulls needed to jolt their organization with a fresh start and a new core. The Bears needed to take a shot at filling their need for a long-term solution at quarterback. And that’s where the similarities end. Both teams traded draft picks in order to make their earth-shattering moves. However, it’s easier to understand the Bears’ move as an attempt to draft a player who was the highest rated player in the draft who played the league’s most important position. The Bulls did not do that, as they paid a ransom, but didn’t even move the team into a top-five selection.
The further we move away from the NFL Draft, the more comfortable I am with what happened that weekend. Yes, the Bears paid a hefty price to pick Mitch Trubisky. And they also left that weekend with fewer picks than what they started. However, they made an aggressive move with the idea of solving a long-term need with the most highly touted prospect on the board at the most important position in the sport. The Bears’ plan might not work, but it’s a plan that aims to answer the biggest question on the roster. The Bulls’ plan might not work either, but it also leaves more questions than answers.
Onward with today’s Bullets:
- Over at Yahoo!’s Shutdown Corner, Frank Schwab set out to preview the Bears’ 2017 season with a focus on how the Bears addressed the quarterback situation. Schwab sees nothing wrong with how the Bears went about trying to fix their long-standing quarterback problem, noting that the risk of adding Trubisky and Mike Glennon is worth taking for a franchise that hasn’t had a top-of-the-line quarterback in nearly 70 years.
- Of course, Trubisky isn’t the only rookie worth keeping a close eye on. After all, Trubisky will be only as good as the supporting cast around him. With that in mind, Chris Roling of Bleacher Report attempts to set some realistic expectations on the Bears’ rookie class. Roling envisions a scenario where tight end Adam Shaheen is the best of the bunch out of the gates because of his size, athleticism, and potential role in the offense as a red zone threat. And because the position features the oft-injured Zach Miller and the relatively unproven Dion Sims, Shaheen could be in line for plenty of snaps this season. Just know that there will be plenty of ups and downs during the process.
- I might be the most intrigued by safety Eddie Jackson, who is brimming with playmaking potential if he can stay healthy and get a firm grasp of the defense and his assignments. All things considered, Jackson’s biggest contributions as a rookie might come via special teams as a return man rather than in the defensive secondary.
- Kevin Fishbain of Pro Football Weekly dives into an inspiring story featuring Champ Kelly, the Bears’ director of pro scouting who uses his own inspirational story to lift others.
- Chase Goodbread has been creating lists of each school’s best draft picks since 2000, the latest being Oregon – where you can find Bears left guard (remember, that’s totally going to be a thing this year) Kyle Long. The Ducks have had 58 players chosen since 2000, and the Bears should consider themselves fortunate to have landed Long, who has performed at a Pro Bowl level at two different positions. Here’s to making it three in 2017.
- What was Adam Shaheen’s favorite sport growing up? Depends on what season it was and what he was playing. The latest in the Bears’ “Meet the Rookies” series is their second-round tight end:
- Derek Carr was paid a hefty chunk of change on Thursday, but are franchise quarterbacks actually underpaid? As far as I’m concerned, it’s a question worth asking. And since those players never hit free agency, perhaps the Bears’ over-aggressive move to potentially nab one in the draft becomes a little more understandable.
- It appears as if good things seem to happen when they sign their big deals, too. Here’s hoping Mitch Trubisky performs well enough to earn his own major payday in a few years.
- Andy Reid has high hopes for Patrick Mahomes, who could be the Kansas City Chiefs’ next franchise quarterback. And if it happens, Reid will get a chance to see it through after signing a contract extension on Thursday. The move came on the same day in which the Chiefs and GM John Dorsey announced that both sides agreed to part ways.
- It’s never too early to take a glance at who this year’s potential MVP candidates will be. For my money, I like Julio Jones at 50/1:
— Greg Auman (@gregauman) June 22, 2017