Limited Kids Ryan Shazier Jersey Upgrade at safety, too. Oh, we’re not done in the defensive backfield. The Bears aren’t much better at safety, which has hurt them when teams attack downfield. Chicago was 27th in DVOA against deep passes last year, while posting the league’s 17th-best mark on shorter throws. The defense as a whole combined for just eight interceptions all year. Some of that traces back to the fact that the Bears faced the league’s fourth-fewest passes, but they still need to find playmakers on defense.
There’s a logical fit for the Bears at the third pick in LSU safety Jamal Adams, although the track record of safeties being taken at the top of the draft is mixed at best. One of the success stories is former fifth overall pick Eric Berry, who may also hit the free-agent market this year if the Chiefs can’t come to terms with him on a contract extension. Berry would be pricey, but he represents the sort of all-world safety the Bears desperately need on the back end of their defense. Even less notable players like Micah Hyde or T.J. McDonald would represent an upgrade for Chicago.
Garrett is the best pure pass-rusher in the 2017 draft. He played through an ankle injury for much of this season and still finished tied for sixth in the SEC with 15.0 tackles for loss (including 8.5 sacks). He has a lethal combination of first-step quickness, bend, power and hand-to-hand combat skills. After adding 10 pounds of muscle last offseason, he was stronger setting the edge versus the run.
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If they don’t use the third overall pick on a quarterback, they could consider Marshon Lattimore of Ohio State, who is seventh on Mel Kiper’s Big Board. In free agency, they should be players for the corners at the top of the market. In a deep class, the Bears could have a shot at Trumaine Johnson, Sam Shields, Logan Ryan, Stephon Gilmore, Dre Kirkpatrick and A.J. Bouye. Coming away with at least one viable starting cornerback — if not two — is hugely important for a team that posted the league’s eighth-best sack rate last year.