The Chicago Bears look to get back to the playoffs since the infamous double doink against the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2018 playoffs. The Bears have one of the best defenses in the league and added to it by signing Robert Quinn and selecting stud cornerback Jaylon Johnson in the draft.
In 2019, the Bears struggled to finish above .500 due to the efforts on the offensive end. By adding Ted Ginn Jr and drafting tight end Cole Kmet, the Bears believe they improved their offense incredibly. The biggest debate this offseason surrounded the addition of Super Bowl MVP, Nick Foles. Will Foles come in and win the starting job week 1 or will Mitchell Trubisky keep the starting job despite struggling in 2019?
Round 2, Pick No. 43: Cole Kmet (TE) Notre Dame
Round 2, Pick No. 50: Jaylon Johnson (CB) Utah
Round 5, Pick No. 155: Trevis Gipson (DE) Tulsa
Round 5, Pick No. 163: Kindle Vildor (CB) Georgia Southern
Round 5, Pick No. 173: Darnell Mooney (WR) Tulane
Round 7, Pick No. 226: Arlington Hambright (OT) Colorado
Round 7, Pick No. 227: Lachavious Simmons (OT) Tennessee State
Draft Grade: B
Coming into the 2020 draft, the Chicago Bears already had nine tight ends on their roster. Therefore at pick 43, everyone thought the Bears were picking another position. However, with that pick, the Bears selected tight end, Cole Kmet, bringing their tight end total to 10.
Kmet was the best tight end on the board and is a prominent addition to an offense that needs help. Pairing up Jimmy Graham and Kmet is a scary sight for defenses as Kmet comes in at 6-foot-6 and 262 pounds. Although Kmet did not provide eye-opening numbers at Notre Dame, he was still efficient. A season ago, he caught 43 passes to go along with 515 yards and six touchdowns, a major difference from his numbers in 2018. Kmet possesses exceptional pass-catching skills that make him a viable starter for the Bears in a few seasons.
Defense wins championships and the Bears live by that motto with their outstanding defense. To bolster their defense, the Bears selected Jaylon Johnson with their second second-round pick. The Bears got a steal in Johnson. His 4.45 40 time placed 10th fastest at the combine and his 15 reps of 225 pounds at the bench press ranked fifth among defensive backs. Also, his vertical jump (36.5 in.) and 20-yard shuttle (4.13 sec) both ranked in the top five. Johnson joins an already talented secondary and will enter the season as Chicago’s third corner.
Although the Bears ranked top 10 in a number of defensive categories in 2019, they still wanted to add more defensive pieces. As a result, they signed veteran defensive end, Robert Quinn, to a five-year, $70 million deal. Despite the fact that this was considered too much money, Quinn’s talent can’t be denied. Last year with Dallas, Quinn contributed 11.5 sacks with two forced fumbles and 34 tackles.
Quinn’s 11.5 sacks from a year ago are exactly why Chicago signed him. In 2019, the Bears ranked 24th in sacks (32). The pass rush was the only part of Chicago’s defense that did not place in the top half of the league. Quinn, a great run defender, joins a defense that ranked ninth in rushing yards against. Quinn will line up opposite of Khalil Mack. Although it is a longshot, Quinn and Mack will look to become the first duo to record 30+ sacks since 2011.
It’s hard to ignore the offseason trade to acquire Nick Foles. Foles, a Super Bowl MVP. He comes into Chicago looking to be the starter week 1. Even though Foles is not credited as a “good” starting quarterback, one can’t look past his Super Bowl run with Philly. In his three playoff starts in 2017, Foles threw for 971 yards, six touchdowns while only throwing one interception.
Foles’s career record as a starting quarterback for the Eagles, Rams, Chiefs and Jaguars is 30-24 including playoffs. While going 0-4 with Jacksonville a year ago, many took Foles off the map to ever be a starter again. However, Foles will compete with Mitchell Trubisky for the starting job in Chicago this upcoming season.
Other Key Additions: Ted Ginn Jr. (WR), Jimmy Graham (TE), Artie Burns (CB) and Tashaun Gibson (S)
This offseason, the Bears did not lose a whole lot of pieces. Their biggest loss being Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. Clinton-Dix only played one season with Chicago and contributed valuable stats for the defense. In his 16 games in 2019, he played 100 percent of the snaps and had 78 tackles. Clinton-Dix was a reliable starter and was all over the field for Chicago.
He is a big loss for this team, but Gibson, who signed with Chicago in the offseason, is a great replacement.
Leonard Floyd signed a one-year deal with the Rams meaning his time in Chicago was over with. Floyd is not a superstar, but provided worthy stats to make him a starter. Over his four year career with Chicago, he totaled 18.5 sacks with 154 tackles.
The former ninth overall pick in the 2016 draft has not lived up to his potential. However, he helped Chicago become one of the best defenses in the league in his tenure with them.
The Bears had an excellent offseason. They replaced the majority of their losses with transcendent players. Although Foles is the better option at quarterback, the Bears will most likely start the season with Trubisky at quarterback. This team is good enough to compete in the NFC North, but will fall short of the playoffs due to the slow start with Trubisky.
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