The 2018 draft is going to have its share of surprises. What a lot of people want to know is will the Chicago Bears be involved in it. They certainly were last year when the turned the draft upside down by trading for quarterback Mitch Trubisky. That made for the second-straight year GM Ryan Pace moved up in the first round for a player. Now many are wondering if he might go three-in-a-row. It’s a matter of whom his target could be. Enter Bradley Chubb.
People will say Quenton Nelson but the reality is the N.C. State pass rusher is the only viable candidate the Bears would likely move up for. This is driven by simple necessity. Chicago has one of the thinnest pass rush groups in the NFL as of now. Pernell McPhee, Willie Young, and Lamarr Houston are gone. Leonard Floyd is their only proven commodity and his 2017 season ended with a knee injury.
Aaron Lynch? Experience but has just 2.5 sacks in the past two years. Howard Jones? Journeyman cut by his previous team. Isaiah Irving? Still unproven former undrafted free agent. Chubb represents the absolute ideal solution for the Bears. He’s a polished, proven rusher from a good program and can start right away. Unfortunately, he’s like not getting out of the top five.
This is where the talk of trading up begins.
Bradley Chubb trade cost comes down to how high Bears go
ESPN columnist Bill Barnwell did a piece recently detailing potential draft trades for all 32 teams. Knowing Chubb is the obvious target, where would the Bears have to go in the top five to get him? The prevailing belief is they stand a good chance if they land the #4 pick from Cleveland. Presuming they’re interested, here’s the projected cost.
“Bears get: 1-4; 4-114
Browns get: 1-8; 2-39
If quarterbacks come off the board 1-2-3, the Browns will be sitting pretty with the fourth overall pick. They also might be in a situation where it would be better to trade down in lieu of taking Barkley or Chubb, given that Cleveland’s biggest need after drafting a quarterback is probably in the secondary…
…With that in mind, the Bears can trade up here and grab Chubb, who profiles best as a 4-3 defensive end but shouldn’t be out of sorts as a 3-4 outside linebacker who will spend 70 percent of his time as a defensive lineman in sub packages. The Browns would then have picks 33, 35 and 39, setting them up for a possible move back into the first round for what would be their third first-round selection.”
It’s not cheap to move up in the top 10. Pace learned that last year when he gave up two third rounders just to go from #3 to #2. Still, the Bears would solve their last major roster problem and have three fourth round picks at their disposal later in the draft. Don’t forget that’s the same round where Pace landed Eddie Jackson and Tarik Cohen last year. It’s an interesting idea with a lot of moving parts.
Would you do it?