A mildly troubling pattern within Bears drafting took some shape as the 2017 selection derby moved through its final day. Not necessarily a serious issue with the organizational mechanism, but...
The problem is re-drafting, a sort of NFL overbooking or double-booking, a dangerous situation that has hurt the Bears at times past when they needed to repeat picks at a certain position because of misses on free agents or draft choices.
It is one thing if the doubling up is at a linchpin position, and some obviously are more that than others. But some of these aren't recurring picks at pass rusher, offensive tackle, quarterback or wide receiver, where a re-draft can be excused because you can never have too many of them.
Drafting Trubisky after signing Glennon – makes sense. Drafting Leonard Floyd with Pernell McPhee and Willie Young in place – check.
The Bears made a commitment at tight end with a three-year deal to get Dion Sims out of Miami. They then double-committed, using used a second-round pick on Adam Shaheen out of Ashland. If the Bears do not have seriously massive plans for the position, which is certainly possible, then the draft move is a little head-scratching, “best available” notwithstanding.
Elsewhere, Pace use three picks last year on defensive backs; none project to be threatening the starting lineup anytime soon.
After trading up in the fourth round this draft, the Bears used the 112th overall pick on Alabama safety Eddie Jackson. Safety was a consensus need area, which is itself a little notable because since arriving in 2015, the Bears and Ryan Pace have drafted Adrian Amos (fifth round), Deon Bush (fourth), DeAndre Houston-Carson (sixth) and are looking to move Deiondre' Hall (fourth) from cornerback to safety. This on top of making Quintin Demps a priority signing this offseason. Now, Jackson.
Contrast that with results when the Bears used No. 2 picks on Tony Parrish (1998) and Mike Brown (2000) to get it right. When Parrish wasn't re-signed in 2002, and Brown's career dissolved into injury after 2004, the safety position spiraled downward, to the detriment of other positions as well.
[VIVID SEATS: Get your Bears tickets right here!]
Then with the 119th pick the Bears tapped diminutive (5-foot-6, 179 pounds) running back Tarik Cohen out of North Carolina A&T, which has had one player drafted in the past 20 years (center Junius Coston to Green Bay, 2005). That doesn't preclude anything, and Cohen could be the Bears version of Darren Sproles, but Garrett Wolfe was going to be the Bears' very own Warrick Dunn 10 years ago.
Cohen makes this the third straight Ryan Pace draft with a mid-round pick going for a running back, following Jordan Howard (fifth round) and Jeremy Langford (fourth) into a roster that had Ka'Deem Carey (fourth) from Phil Emery's final draft.
No position is unimportant in the NFL, but the positions at which these re-draftings are happening isn't ideal. Mid rounds ideally yield pass rushers such as Alex Brown (fourth) and Mark Anderson (sixth) or impact defensive linemen like Henry Melton (fourth).
Former GM Jerry Angelo conceded that he and his staff had real trouble hitting on offensive linemen (Marc Colombo, Terrence Metcalf, Josh Beekman, Chris Williams, Gabe Carimi, all fourth round or higher), which was largely why the majority of the '05, '06 and '10 O-lines came from free agency.
Pace cannot afford needing too many repeats in the drive to reverse the fortunes of a franchise that has had to retake the same ground too many times in the past.