Bears conducting their own NFL mock draft

Bears conducting their own NFL mock draft

Before making too much fun of mock drafts swirling around this time of the NFL year, understand this: Upstairs at Halas Hall, where Bears scouts, personnel execs and coaches noodle through grades on players in drafts, there is a mock draft pool (no word, however, on who won last year’s with the most correctly predicted picks).

GM Ryan Pace confirmed on Wednesday that the Bears’ board is in fact set, meaning that players have been ranked by grade in advance of Thursday’s first round and the six rounds to come over Friday and Saturday.

So since the Bears know what they think of players, “the last two days have been kind of us sitting in the office and going over those different scenarios, which is always entertaining,” Pace said, smiling. “Somebody’ll throw a curve ball in there and you kind of give him a hard time.”

It’s more than an exercise in friendly competition. Possible what-if scenarios allow the Bears to do walk-through’s of what their reaction will to particular players coming off their draft board, and whether a trade up or back in the draft can be done, all pointed toward landing an impact player, especially with the first-round pick.

But scenarios will be played out in later rounds as well, with the Bears in prime position with two fourth-round and two sixth-round picks.

“There’s different ‘pockets’ [of players] in rounds,” Pace said. “We might be looking at a position and say, ‘Hey, there’s a lot of quality fourth-round guys at this position, but there’s not a lot up here in the first round, so this is a position if we’re going to attack, and there’s some dudes in the third or fourth round that we feel really strongly about at that value…’

“As I visualize our draft board, I can see where those pockets of guys are.”

Which of course gives him an edge in the mock-draft pool.

Controversial calls played a large part in the Detroit Lions NFC North loss on Monday night


Controversial calls played a large part in the Detroit Lions NFC North loss on Monday night

The Green Bay Packers managed to pull off a dramatic comeback victory on Monday night, defeating the Detroit Lions 23-22 on a last-second field goal from Mason Crosby. But after the game, it wasn't Aaron Rodgers usual clutch ways that people were talking about, it was the officiating crew, who had two controversial hands to the face penalty calls against the Lions that all but killed any momentum they had going. 

As you can see in the clip above, both hands to the face calls seemed questionable at best, and downright ludicrous at worst. What makes the calls so tough is the timing. The first hands to the face penalty on Lions DE Trey Flowers came after he sacked Rodgers on third-and-10 and the penalty both took away the sack and provided the Pack with an automatic first down. Later in the drive, Rodgers dropped in a great 35-yard touchdown pass to bring Green Bay within two points 

The second questionable hands to the face call came on third-and-4 and it was the most costly call of the game. The Packers received another automatic first down and ran down the clock—Detroit was out of timeouts—to set up the eventual game-winning, walk-off field goal from Crosby. 

And it didn't take long for many people, everyone from former NFL greats to NFL reporters, to chime in on social media with their thoughts on the officiating that seemingly cost Detroit a crucial win. 

With the Green Bay win, the Lions moved to last-place in the NFC North, while the Bears now sit 2.5 games back of first place heading into their Week 7 matchup against the New Orleans Saints.

NFC North Standings: Bears 2.5 games behind Packers entering Week 7

NFC North Standings: Bears 2.5 games behind Packers entering Week 7

The Green Bay Packers and quarterback Aaron Rodgers pulled off another incredible (or maybe controversial) victory over the Detroit Lions in Monday night's NFC North slugfest, 23-22, to advance to 5-1 and in sole possession of first place in the NFC North.

It was the worst possible outcome for the Chicago Bears, who could've used a little help from the Lions to keep pace with Green Bay entering Week 7.

Instead, the Bears (3-2) are now 2.5 games behind the Packers ahead of their showdown with the New Orleans Saints Sunday at Soldier Field.

It could be worse for Chicago. Detroit's loss drops their record to 2-2-1 on the season and moves them into the division's cellar. Meanwhile, the Minnesota Vikings had arguably their strongest showing of the season in their 38-20 victory over the Eagles and improved to 4-2 on the year. Their four wins slot them ahead of the Bears for second place in the North even though Chicago currently owns the head-to-head tiebreaker.

Here are the NFC North standings heading into Week 7:

1) Packers (5-1)
2) Vikings (4-2)
3) Bears (3-2)
4) Lions (2-2-1)