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The Chicago Bears will take on the New Orleans Saints later today in the NFC’s wild-card playoff round after a season that’s had more than its fair share of ups and downs for Bears fans in 2020.
A 5-1 start that was followed by a quarterback change and a six-game losing streak somehow finished at 8-8 and a playoff berth.
But Bears fans are a reasonable and smart bunch. They know this team is still missing a few key pieces before it can be considered a legitimate championship squad.
Mitch Trubisky may have evolved into a competent starter but he still has a long way to go before he can be rated among the class of quarterbacks who are yearly contenders. The offensive line needs two new offensive tackles, and Khalil Mack still doesn’t have help opposite him in the pass rush.
For the first time in two years, the Bears can address those needs with a first-round pick. Hopefully, it’ll be a few more weeks before fans start digging into mock drafts and prospects who could be available for whenever Chicago is on the clock. But when ESPN’s Todd McShay publishes his first mock draft of the 2021 NFL draft season, we have to pay attention.
The Bears currently hold the 20th pick in the first round, and in McShay’s mock, he sends Chicago Ole Miss wide receiver, Elijah Moore.
Commence emergency response now!
This would be an absolute disaster for a Bears team that has much bigger needs than a wide receiver. This pick makes even less sense if it’s under the assumption that Allen Robinson is leaving town. Moore is a small and speedy slot guy. He won’t replace Robinson. At all.
Well, Mitchell Trubisky might be playing his way back onto the Bears’ 2021 roster — and with four quarterbacks off the board already here, there wouldn’t be too many options if Chicago chose to go that route. I’ll be watching to see what Chicago does in free agency at QB or if the Bears attempt to trade up at all. Regardless, the Bears need weapons to get this offense closer to the talented defense’s level. Worse, Allen Robinson is a pending free agent. Moore could be an excellent pick here, bringing speed and an ability to work the middle of the field. He trailed only DeVonta Smith in catches and receiving yardage this season.
If you’re part of the Bears contingent that believes it’s time to add another quarterback in Round 1, Alabama’s Mac Jones comes off the board in McShay’s mock just one pick later. North Dakota State’s Trey Lance is swiped by the Washington Football Team at pick 19.
If you’re a fan banging the table for Chicago to upgrade the offensive line with their first pick, there are plenty of quality offensive tackles still on the board in this mock scenario. Names like Ohio State’s Jalen Mayfield, Notre Dame’s Liam Eichenberg, and North Dakota State’s Dillon Radunz are still unpicked. All three would be instant starters for the Bears.
Admittedly, this is McShay’s first mock draft of 2021, so much will change between now and next April. But the last thing the Bears should be targeting is a slot receiver in Round 1.