There are several players the Chicago Bears would be willing to take at the number nine pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. There’s one they covet, though. Bears assistant general manager Ian Cunningham met with reporters on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the draft.
The Chicago Bears like 6-8 players at 9
Cunningham said the Bears don’t assign round grades to prospects, but the team has 6-8 players in mind to take at the number nine position.
There are 6-8 players the #Bears feel comfortable with at No. 9 overall, per #Bears assistant GM Ian Cunningham.
— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) April 25, 2023
Cunningham spoke about one prospect that has recently been getting a lot of attention in Chicago: Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter. According to Kevin Fishbain with The Athletic, Cunningham said the Bears “covet” Carter’s skills as a defensive playmaker:
“He’s one of those players that you covet in terms of being one of the better defensive tackles in this draft.”
Bears assistant GM Ian Cunningham on Jalen Carter: "He's one of those players that you covet in terms of being one of the better defensive tackles in this draft."
Referenced the 2021 Georgia national championship team and how often "88" showed up on tape on a stacked D-line.
— Kevin Fishbain (@kfishbain) April 25, 2023
Carter has had a few issues this offseason that have allegedly hurt his draft stock. He pleaded no contest to traffic charges in an incident connected to the death of two members of the Georgia football program. A few weeks later, Carter showed up to his Pro Day out of shape. Cunningham said Tuesday that the Bears understood Carter better after meeting with him and that Carter would fit in head coach Matt Eberflus H.I.T.S. philosophy.
“The more time you spent around him the more you realized that he’s a good player, but you get to know him [as a person],” Cunningham said.
#Bears assistant GM Ian Cunningham danced around some Jalen Carter questions.
"The more time you spent around him the more you realized that he's a good player, but you get to know him [as a person]," Cunningham said.
— Sean Hammond (@sean_hammond) April 25, 2023
"Jalen is a really good player. There is no denying it." — Ian Cunningham on Jalen Carter and how he would fit in Matt Eberflus' "HITS" principle
Cunningham also said he is active, physical on the field and he personally views him as a "HITS" principle guy.
— Nicholas Moreano (@NicholasMoreano) April 25, 2023
There’s a good chance Carter won’t be on the draft board by the time the Bears pick. But if he’s available, it seems like general manager Ryan Poles might gift Eberflus his three-tech.
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