25 players the Chicago Bears could consider on Days 2 and 3 of the NFL draft


DETROIT — The Chicago Bears made their big splash Thursday night, drafting quarterback Caleb Williams with the No. 1 pick and grabbing wide receiver Rome Odunze eight picks later. General manager Ryan Poles and his staff now must adjust their draft board and strategy for the next two days.

After picking twice in the top 10, the Bears currently own only two more selections over the final 225 picks during the next five rounds: Nos. 75 and 122. So whom might Poles target with those selections in Rounds 3 and 4?

Here are 25 prospects worth keeping an eye on, sorted by position.

Offensive line

West Virginia offensive lineman Zach Frazier sprints during Big 12 pro day on March 30, 2024, in Frisco, Texas. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

Roger Rosengarten, Washington

Those who watched only the Huskies’ loss to Michigan in the national championship game might worry about Rosengarten’s ill-timed penalties and ordinary athleticism. But that game was an outlier. Rosengarten was rock solid the rest of the season at right tackle and turned heads with his effort at the Senior Bowl in January. He is strong, aggressive and a proven pass protector.

Blake Fisher, Notre Dame

Joe Alt — selected fifth by the Los Angeles Chargers on Thursday — rightfully hogged much of the offensive line acclaim coming out of South Bend, Ind. But Fisher, at 6-foot-6 and 310 pounds, is both massive and agile and seems to have great feel for the tackle position. Evaluators are drawn to his nimble feet and overall awareness.

Christian Jones, Texas

Jones spent six seasons at Texas and made 48 career starts for the Longhorns. Talent evaluators view him as a powerful right tackle with plenty of upside. He might never be a top-tier NFL lineman, but as a possible Day 3 pick, Jones could be a bargain find with potential to develop into a reliable long-term starter.

Patrick Paul, Houston

At 6-8, 331 pounds, Paul is much, much bigger than his older brother Chris, the NBA point guard. Patrick Paul has 36 1/4-inch arms and combines that with impressive footwork. If he slips into Round 3, he could be a developmental player worth investing in thanks to his natural pass-protection gifts.

Zach Frazier, West Virginia

A high school wrestling star, Frazier’s physicality at center is obvious. He is aggressive and instinctive and has good vision. Talent evaluators worry some about his arm length (32 1/4 inches) but praise his competitive edge.

Sedrick Van Pran-Granger, Georgia

Van Pran-Granger made 44 starts at center over his final three seasons at Georgia, earning first-team All-SEC honors last season and second-team honors in 2022. He will need to show improved agility and balance in space in the NFL but has an intriguing combination of intelligence, physicality and toughness.

Beaux Limmer, Arkansas

Limmer has position versatility on the inside of the offensive line and could be worth rolling the dice on as a developmental center. He posted 39 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press at the combine, and that strength also was obvious on his tape as he consistently handled his business against SEC defenders.

Defensive line

Colorado State defensive lineman Mohamed Kamara stops Boise State running back Ashton Jeanty on Oct. 14, 2023, in Fort Collins, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Colorado State defensive lineman Mohamed Kamara stops Boise State running back Ashton Jeanty on Oct. 14, 2023, in Fort Collins, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Mohamed Kamara, Colorado State

If the Bears could snag Kamara in the fourth round, they would do so with no regrets and all sorts of optimism he could develop into a disruptive playmaker. Kamara was the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year in 2023 and had career totals of 30½ sacks, 45½ tackles for a loss and five forced fumbles.

Javon Solomon, Troy

Solomon might not have prototypical athleticism and will enter the league out of the Sun Belt Conference, but his college production was eye-popping. He had an FBS-best 16 sacks last season and has shown the burst and instincts to become a solid situational pass rusher in the NFL.

Braden Fiske, Florida State

The Seminoles defensive tackle seems to be a HITS principle poster child, a high-motor player with great quickness and tenacity and proven ability as both a run stopper and pass rusher. Fiske finished last season strong with six sacks over his final five games. He might not last to No. 75 but could be worth the gamble if he does.

Brandon Dorlus, Oregon

Dorlus might be a good fit on the interior of Matt Eberflus’ defensive line, a penetrating three-technique tackle whose athleticism and power pop on film. He can be a reliable run stopper and has the potential to become a better interior pass rusher in the right setting.

Bralen Trice, Washington

Without elite athleticism or explosion, Trice will have to win at the next level with effort and instinct, two traits that happen to be strengths of his. He may fit better as a stand-up pass rusher in a 3-4 system but has the versatility to move around and be effective on twists and stunts.

Tight end

Texas tight end Ja'Tavion Sanders speaks at the NFL combine on Feb. 29, 2024, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
Texas tight end Ja’Tavion Sanders speaks at the NFL combine on Feb. 29, 2024, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

Ja’Tavion Sanders, Texas

Bears offensive coordinator Shane Waldron loves to utilize tight ends in his offense, which could heighten the attraction to Sanders, a big-play threat with intriguing speed and a proven ability to make catches in congestion.

Jared Wiley, TCU

At 6-6 and 249 pounds, Wiley is a big target with impressive hands and the potential to contribute on third down and near the goal line. He’s capable but not great as a run blocker and has special teams value as he develops.

Linebacker

N.C. State linebacker Payton Wilson (11) looks down at Virginia Tech quarterback Kyron Drones after a sack at Lane Stadium. (Peter Casey/USA Today)
N.C. State linebacker Payton Wilson (11) looks down at Virginia Tech quarterback Kyron Drones after a sack at Lane Stadium. (Peter Casey/USA Today)

Payton Wilson, N.C. State

With Tremaine Edmunds, TJ Edwards and Jack Sanborn already established, linebacker is a luxury item on Poles’ shopping list. But Wilson, who won the Butkus and Bednarik awards last season, has drawn raves from talent evaluators as a fast and fearless defender who hunts the football and has a high floor. Injury issues — two ACL tears and a season-ending shoulder injury — could cause him to slip some. But ESPN draft analyst Field Yates called Wilson “a maniac.” “He would hit an oncoming train if he could,” Yates said.

Running back

Notre Dame running back Audric Estime runs for a touchdown against Stanford on Nov. 25, 2023, in Stanford, Calif.. (AP Photo/Jed Jacobsohn)
Notre Dame running back Audric Estime runs for a touchdown against Stanford on Nov. 25, 2023, in Stanford, Calif.. (AP Photo/Jed Jacobsohn)

Audric Estime, Notre Dame

The Bears are pretty well-fortified in their running backs room, but Estime is a promising prospect with an impressive combination of vision, balance and toughness. Said ESPN analyst Matt Miller: “There’s almost a little bit of old-school Frank Gore with the way he runs. You have no idea how he’s going to fit through a gap and then suddenly he’s picked up 7 yards.”

Dylan Laube, New Hampshire

Laube seems like a fit for the Bears running attack and, perhaps more importantly, had notable production as a pass catcher with 68 receptions for 699 yards and seven touchdowns at the FCS level last season. He backed that up with an impressive Senior Bowl week in January and brings potential as a kickoff and punt returner.

Blake Corum, Michigan

NFL Network analyst Joel Klatt calls Corum “one of the most undervalued players in the entire draft,” which could make him a steal if he’s still around on Day 3. Corum rushed for 1,245 yards with 27 touchdowns during the Wolverines’ national championship run. He is tough, agile, smart, instinctive, competitive and described as a coach’s dream.

Secondary

Washington State's Jaden Hicks stops UCLA's T.J. Harden on Oct. 7, 2023. (Trevor Stamp/Los Angeles Daily News)
Washington State’s Jaden Hicks stops UCLA’s T.J. Harden on Oct. 7, 2023. (Trevor Stamp/Los Angeles Daily News)

Jaden Hicks, Washington State

Hicks is consistently active as a bit of a hybrid safety. He has potential as a blitzer and could easily carve out a niche as a core special teams player in his early years. Yates called Hicks’ performance against Washington in November “one of the 10 best games of any player in the draft class.”

Elijah Jones, Boston College

On the one hand, the Bears are pretty well set at cornerback with Jaylon Johnson, Kyler Gordon and Tyrique Stevenson under contract for at least two more seasons. But if the adage that “you can never have too many cornerbacks” enters the conversation at Halas Hall, Jones’ length, physicality and ball skills would be worth a discussion. He had five interceptions during an All-ACC campaign last fall.

Wide receiver

USC wide receiver Brenden Rice, left, makes a catch as Arizona cornerback Ephesians Prysock defends on Oct. 7, 2023, in Los Angeles. (Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP)
USC wide receiver Brenden Rice, left, makes a catch as Arizona cornerback Ephesians Prysock defends on Oct. 7, 2023, in Los Angeles. (Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP)

Brenden Rice, USC

Adding more weapons to the passing attack almost seems counterproductive at this point. But Caleb Williams loves Rice for his size and route-running savvy, which should put a plus into his scouting report at Halas Hall. Rice is a willing blocker in the run game and could serve as a complementary piece to DJ Moore and Keenan Allen as a rookie. Oh, he’s also the son of Jerry Rice, arguably the best wide receiver in NFL history.

Luke McCaffrey, Rice

On the topic of good bloodlines, McCaffrey’s older brother Christian had 2,443 yards from scrimmage and 26 touchdowns last season, including the postseason. His dad, Ed, won three Super Bowls during a 13-year NFL career. But Luke McCaffrey also will draw attention after an excellent Senior Bowl week in January following a senior season with 71 catches, 992 yards and 13 touchdowns. His body control and football instincts could make him a passing-game chess piece in the NFL.

Jacob Cowing, Arizona

Cowing’s seven-catch, 152-yard, two-touchdown explosion against Oklahoma earned him Alamo Bowl MVP honors and put an exclamation point on a strong season. While undersized (5-8, 168), Cowing has impressive quickness to win off the line of scrimmage. He had at least one reception in 57 consecutive games and scored four of his 13 touchdowns last season in an October loss at USC. He also has potential as a returner.

Malachi Corley, Western Kentucky

Corley is one of the more intriguing quick-game weapons in this class, an ultra-physical playmaker with tackle-breaking ability after the catch and as a ball carrier. In a word, he is a creator. He had 79 catches, 984 yards and 11 touchdowns last season.

Specialists

Tory Taylor, Iowa

A Day 3 dice roll on a punter? Why not? Taylor had 103 career punts of at least 50 yards and set an NCAA single-season record with his 48.3-yard average last season. He was also a team captain and a consensus All-American.



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