This Might Be the Bears’ Best, Most Realistic Trade-Down Option
At the risk of over-saturation, part of me wants to be choosy when it comes to sharing mock drafts. Particularly at this time of year. We’ve got such a long road to go down that I don’t want to overdo it with the mocks.
HOWEVER, the latest from The 33rd Team — a content-creating think tank featuring reporters, analysts, and a ton of former NFL coaches, players, and executives — has my attention.
This mock draft piques my interest because it checks off several boxes. Firstly, it projects a Chicago Bears trade-back. That isn’t new or unique to the mock draft landscape, but it is still notable. Secondly, it predicts who the Bears will draft into the first round after cutting a deal. Again, that tends to be a given when these make their way in front of my eyes. But the big thing here is that it presents the entirety of what a trade-down looks like for the Bears. In other words, we get a full idea of what picks the Bears would get in return for executing this mock draft trade-down.
And the way I see it, this deal with the Indianapolis Colts might be the most realistic trade-down possibility we see this offseason:
- BEARS GET: The 4th overall pick (which is used on taking Alabama pass-rusher Will Anderson), Indy’s 2nd round pick (35th overall), the Colts’ 3rd-rounder (79th overall), and a 2024 1st-round pick.
- COLTS GET: The 1st overall pick (which is used to choose Kentucky QB Will Levis) and a Bears 4th-round selection (pick No. 102)
At first blush, I’d take that deal. And with little hesitation, too.
How would you feel if the headliners in a Bears draft-pick swap were a future first-round pick and an opportunity to choose between Anderson and Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter? I’d be over the moon about that possibility playing out. And that is before I dive into the rest of the trade’s bits.
Re-couping an early second round pick would soften the blow of not having a pick in that range. Remember, the Bears sent it to Pittsburgh in the Chase Claypool trade. Plus, it would put the Bears in a position to land a quality player. There are several second-rounders each year who slip out of the first round and make us wonder how. The Bears getting an opportunity to get someone who falls under that umbrella would be groovy. Adding a third-rounder is nice, too. The Bears coming away with five Day 2 picks would make for a fun weekend of coverage. And that’s before we figure out if they nail the selections. And that 2024 first-rounder is the ultimate pot sweetener. I’m not sure the Bears would do a trade-back that doesnt include a 2024 first-round pick. And, frankly, I know I wouldn’t.
We’ve still got a long way to go when it comes to pegging the exactitudes of the 2023 NFL Draft. But with that being said, the Bears sitting atop the board is excellent. Owning the No. 1 pick has its perks. Right now, the biggest one is that it gives them full command of the draft board. And that means GM Ryan Poles can shoot for the moon when it comes to trade offers. However, if Poles misses, it seems likely that he will still land among the stars.