The 2013 NFL Draft is in the books, and the Chicago Bears’ choices over the weekend raised a lot of eyebrows. GM Phil Emery didn’t add the pass-catching tight end many analysts expected, and the first player he did bring in was one of the most unlikely choices of the first round.
Here’s a look at every pick the Bears made and how successful each move is likely to be (corrected for lower expectations in the later rounds):
Round 1 (Pick 20): OG Kyle Long, Oregon
The second son of former Raider Howie Long to wind up in the NFL, Kyle Long may wind up blocking older brother Chris when the Bears play the Rams in November.
Kyle is a phenomenal athlete at 6’6”, 313 lbs, and he can play multiple positions on the line (a major need for Chicago). However, he’s also immensely raw, with just one season of college experience, and the Bears had plenty of chances to address other needs with more proven players here.
Round 2 (Pick 50): LB Jon Bostic, Florida
We expected the first day of the NFL Draft to be dramatic and it did not disappoint. It was a sensational few hours that left most viewing breathless at times. Here is a pick-by-pick recap and summary of Day one of the draft.
1. Kansas City Chiefs:
Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan.
The Chiefs started the evening of with somewhat of a shock. I was widely expected that they would take Luke Joeckel with the number one pick but there had been gathering rumours throughout the day that new Head Coach Andy Reid was smitten with Fisher and he was the choice. The reason they went for Fisher is that he plays a little nastier and the Chiefs think he has more upside. They couldn't have gone wrong with either selection, they now have an insurance policy as Miami contibues to work with Branden Albert over a trade for a second round pick. If Albert stays, they now have two quality tackles that should give Alex Smith enough time to utilise the weapons available to him.
Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M
It’s never been the most scintillating form of entertainment. Despite all the talk and posturing and prognosticating that takes place in the months leading up to it, the NFL draft, the actual event itself, never quite lives up to its build-up.
Year in and year out, the pattern rarely changes. Fans, from cursory to creepy, get caught up in the fanfare to some degree. They hear the chit-chat about their teams’ needs, their teams’ drafting tendencies and their teams’ likely choices, all the while becoming that much more curious.
The anticipation mounts, knowingly or not – to some level, at least. Mock drafts get perused, read and re-read. Then the first round comes each April, and … it leaves you a little flat. If you happened to follow the proceedings at all, they just don’t seem to fulfill the appetite – even if your team picked the guy you wanted it to pick.
It’s like expecting a steak with all the trimmings and what you get is a plain hamburger, sans bun.
I’m in the minority, both at home and abroad.
Quarterback, to me, is not THE ISSUE for the local football franchise that plays at Lincoln Financial Field just up the road, nor is it for the 2013 NFL Draft, which begins tonight in New York City.
Oh, it’s been talked about, near and far, to the umpteenth degree for weeks, heck, for months – how the Eagles need a new one, a surefire, can’t-miss guy to run the show in new coach Chip Kelly’s offense for years to come, and how this year’s available choices are lacking, not only in that regard, but just in general.
I just don’t buy it, on either count.
Put it this way, the view here is that Philly doesn’t necessarily need a quarterback. That it’s fine if GM Howie Roseman opts to fill another spot with the No. 4 pick tonight, or if the Kelly/Roseman braintrust opts to pick a QB, too – because the pickings are pretty darn good … for any team.
1. Kansas City Chiefs – OT Luke Joeckel, Texas A&M University
Reason: The Chiefs have done a solid job in rebuilding their team from the hiring of new head coach Andy Reid, acquiring quarterback Alex Smith from the San Francisco 49ers, and re-sign wide receiver Dwayne Bowe. With current left tackle Branden Albert currently on the trade block, protecting Smith's blindside becomes an immediate need.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars – DE/OLB Dion Jordan, University of Oregon
Reason: The Jaguars have hired former Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley as their new head coach. Based on Bradley's background and the Jaguars need for an upgrade to their pass rushing unit. It is rumored that the Jaguars are down to selecting one of two players with their selection and that Jordan is one of them.
3. Oakland Raiders – QB Geno Smith, West Virginia University