When discussing the 2023 draft, most conversations regarding the Chicago Bears start with the trench. Both the defensive and offensive lines need a lot of work before next season. Initial predictions have them taking defensive tackle or a pass rusher in the 1st round next April. From there, the question becomes what positions they target on Day 2. The offensive line is obviously the starting point, but many feel they must stay aggressive in finding capable wide receivers. They still don’t have enough to help Justin Fields.
Adam Hoge and Adam Jahns spoke with highly-regarding draft expert Dane Brugler of The Athletic to discuss the Bears. Things got interesting when the topic of wide receivers came up. In his estimation, Brugler doesn’t consider 2023 a strong class in terms of star power. However, it has substantial depth. One area that intrigues him is the senior group. He listed several names that likely go where the Bears will be picking the 2nd or 3rd rounds that can come in right away and contribute.
The Chicago Bears may not find their star next year.
That isn’t a terrible thing. It is merely an unfortunate likelihood. Free agency is devoid of players even remotely close to #1 status. That is likely why Ryan Poles traded for Chase Claypool a few weeks ago. He knew how thin the market would be. That leads one to think he might not look to draft a receiver early at all. He might wait until the middle or later rounds before taking some calculated fliers. There are good reasons to think he can land somebody decent. Kansas City found Tyreek Hill in the 5th round. Chicago found Darnell Mooney in the 5th round. It’s been done.
The list of options Brugler mentioned is intriguing. Rashee Rice is dominating this season with 1300 yards and 10 touchdowns for SMU. Zay Flowers has 1,000 yards and 12 touchdowns for Boston College. A.T. Perry of Wake Forest might be the most intriguing. He’s 6’5, 206 lbs, and has scored 26 touchdowns over the past two seasons. He can be an overpowering presence. The Chicago Bears should not leave the 2023 draft without a receiver. That much is certain. It sounds like they’ll have some solid options.