Chicago Bears need to upgrade the talent on the defensive line
It’s understandable why Chicago Bears fans would want a wide receiver taken in the first round of next year’s NFL Draft. Bears Twitter has been popping up footage of Ohio State wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba, and arguing why he’d be a great fit with Justin Fields. But the Bears should and will likely be looking into fixing their depleted defensive line next offseason.
Smith-Njigba would make a great fit on a team lacking a “Y” or “Z” receiver. But the Bears’ hands are currently all but thumbs having those two positions in tact while lacking the “X” receiver. More than that, the Bears usually can’t have nice things like skilled offensive players (Kevin White) in the first round of the draft. Not that they usually target those positions. They typically go after a defensive player or the offensive line.
Going to the Bears scouting department for advice on offensive players in college is a lot like going to your local archdiocese for advice on sex, it’s outside of their expertise. When they do have nice things (Greg Olsen) the Bears can’t keep said nice things. What the Bears can nab you is a talented defensive roster that can work to dull the team’s spectator’s imaginations as to what a modern NFL game looks like on offense by keeping the opposition’s skilled players in check.
The top of the 2023 draft will have lots of defensive line options for the Chicago Bears
The Bears lost a lot of elite talent this offseason at the defensive line. Akiem Hicks and Khalil Mack are gone. Robert Quinn, who broke the Bears franchise record for sacks in a season, 18.5, will likely be gone before the end of this season. This will leave them with a defensive line unit that could rival the Chicago Bears’ offensive line’s starters in an exhibition contest but would struggle to get to the quarterback in a quarter of a minute versus any other league opponent in the regular season.
Fortunately for the Bears, there will be plenty of beefy talent at the defensive line position in the 2023 draft. Multiple draft websites have four defensive linemen in the top ten prospects for 2023. If the Bears’ final record matches most national expectations, general manager Ryan Poles should be drafting in the top ten easily.
Four defensive linemen that would fit for the Chicago Bears in 2023
Here’s a list of four exciting defensive linemen that are commonly found on 2023 draft boards in the top ten that the Chicago Bears should consider:
Will Anderson Jr., EDGE, Alabama
The 6-foot-4, 243-pound Anderson would be a perfect addition to a unit that lost Mack. Anderson racked up 17.5 sacks last season for the Crimson Tide. He also registered 101 total tackles. Anderson will be a force in the NFL and could bring the Chicago Bears’ defense back to life in 2023.
Myles Murphy, defensive end, Clemson
Murphy, using his colossal 6-foot-5, 275-pound frame, has registered 12 sacks in the last two seasons at Clemson. He had 10.5 tackles for loss and 3 forced fumbles in 2021. The Bears could use acumen for the ball to create turnovers in Matt Eberflus aggressive defensive scheme.
Jalen Carter, defensive tackle, Georgia
Carter was amazing for Georgia on their way to winning the 2021 National Championship. The 6-foot-3, 310-pound sophomore was a force on the interior defensive line. Carter accumulated 37 total tackles and 3 sacks last season. He could help to shore up a nose tackle position the Bears will struggle most of 2022 with.
Bryan Bresee, defensive tackle, Clemson
Bresee is coming off a torn ACL that cut short his 2021 season. The 6-foot-5, 300-pound Sophmore gave major contributions to Clemson in 2020. He registered 4 sacks and 23 total tackles and had 1 forced fumble. If he can keep healthy, Bresee could bring a nasty pass rush back to the Bears’ defense.
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