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The Possibilities at Eleven: Volume I

| April 18th, 2016

Jack-Conklin-1280

The Bears website catalogued the players being mocked to the team by analysts across the country. Andrew Dannehy weighs in on each. This is the first of four volumes.

Prospect Profile: Jack Conklin, OT, Michigan State

Pros: Conklin is big (6’6″, 305) and nasty with exceptionally long arms (35 inches). He was al All-American playing against tough competition at Michigan State. Might not be a better pass-blocker than Charles Leno right away, but he has athletic upside and would immediately be a mauler in the run game.

Cons: His footwork makes him looks slow out of his stance at times. He’ll probably struggle against speed-rushers, which could be a major problem in a division with Clay Matthews. If he struggled at left tackle, the Bears really don’t have anywhere else to put him.

Summary: Conklin is a good prospect and one of my favorites tackle prospects in this draft. If the Bears are confident he can improve his footwork and play left tackle right away, he could very well be the pick. Personally, I’m not convinced he’s going to be an upgrade over Leno, in year one, anyway.

Jeff’s Thought: Aren’t the days of the tough, white Big Ten tackle over? When I watch Conklin I can’t imagine any scenario where he is able to block Von Miller.

Prospect Profile: Leonard Floyd, Edge, Georgia

Pros: At six-foot-six, Floyd showed exceptional agility and fluid hips, even running down the field with wide receivers at times last season. He can be a chess piece as he can drop in coverage and rush from a variety of positions on defense.

Cons: Just not strong. Most of his pressures came by running around offensive tackles, not beating them with strength or technique.  He’s a very good athlete. He isn’t amazing. Seemed to miss a lot of tackles, likely because of his lack of upper body strength.

Summary: Floyd is a tough prospect for me. If he adds strength, he could become a good pass-rusher, but he’d need to add a lot of strength. Right now he’d be a situational / kind of a gimmick player. High risk, high reward.

Jeff’s Thought: I don’t think the Bears are in position to be adding “a chess piece” with the eleventh pick. 

Prospect Profile: Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida

Pros: Considered by many to be the best cornerback in the class. Has a strong frame and showed explosive athleticism in college and at the combine. Intercepted 10 passes in three years at Florida and defended 27 more.  Considered to be competitive and instinctive.

Cons: Measured under 5’11” and has short arms. Questions if he’ll be able to match up with bigger receivers outside and he might have to be a slot corner. Only had four passes defended last year.

Summary: If he were two inches taller, he’d be a lock to be taken in the top five. As it stands, he could drop out of the top 10 and the Bears would be forced to make a decision. They could use him like Arizona uses the Honey Badger.

Jeff’s Thought: Corners scare me. I just don’t see the value anymore. With the rules changing every day to make it easier for passing games to excel, why would an NFL use this high of a pick on a position the league itself is trying to relegate to the bargain bin? 

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