Why Bears need to scout top QBs in 2023 NFL draft, per Mike Florio

Why Bears need to seriously scout top QBs, per Mike Florio originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

When the Bears locked up the No. 1 pick in the draft, there was a brief moment of hysteria as folks started wondering if the Bears should ditch Justin Fields to draft a new quarterback. That moment seems to have passed, and now a consensus has started forming that Fields will be back with the Bears next year. On Tuesday, Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio added his voice to that chorus.

“It would be foolish at this point to give up on Justin Fields,” Florio said on NBC Sports Chicago’s “Football Night in Chicago” show. “The challenge is get the most out of him, develop him as a passer to go along with those running skills, which really are the best of any quarterback in the NFL right now. This is a great thing that the Bears have. Anytime you draft a quarterback, you're scratching off a lottery ticket. They have a winner. They need to keep him and build around him and build his game out to make him into the best quarterback he can be.”

Fields’ development as a top rushing QB in the league can’t be overstated. Time and time again he showed incredible ability to evade pass rushers and reel off long runs. He became the first quarterback to have three rushing touchdowns in a career, and he did it in one month. Fields broke the Bears’ single-season rushing record for a quarterback with 1,143, and fell just 64 yards short of breaking Lamar Jackson’s 2019 NFL record.

So, no, the Bears should not draft a quarterback this year. Still, Florio believes it would be wise for Ryan Poles and his staff to do serious scouting on Bryce Young, C.J. Stroud and the other top-shelf QBs in this year’s draft.

“The Bears should be very aware of who those quarterbacks are, what makes them good, where the weaknesses are, so they can engage in intelligent negotiations with teams that want to move up,” Florio said. “That's what drives it. It's year by year, case by case. Who is the player? What is the player worth? And ultimately how many other teams are trying to get into that spot? The more teams that are trying to get that spot, the more you get via the trade.”

Many people expect the Bears to try to trade the No. 1 overall pick to a QB needy team, so that the Bears can add picks to their inventory as they add young talent to the roster. The NFL draft begins Apr. 27.

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