Erik Lambert Profile picture
Apr 29, 2018 17 tweets 7 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
I wanted to wait a bit for things to settle down before assessing what the #Bears accomplished over the past three days from the draft to undrafted free agency.

Here we go.
1. I love how Ryan Pace altered his approach to the early rounds. He shifted to targeting more proven players who were highly productive and experienced in college. #Bears.
2. Roquan Smith is a stud. He was my favorite defensive prospect and I knew he'd make such a good fit for the #Bears. Vic Fangio is a former linebackers coach who's overseen Ray Lewis and Patrick Willis. His push for Smith should be considered gospel. #Bears
3. Honestly it won't matter where the #Bears decide to play James Daniels. He'll get his man blocked either way. Giving a talent like him to Harry Hiestand is borderline cheating. Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen will see lots of daylight. #Bears
4. I'm not a fan of Pace continuing to give up future picks but as I continue to watch Anthony Miller, I'm starting to understand why he traded up for him. This kid is athletic, sure. Yet what sticks out is his desire. Refuses to be denied. Great combination. #Bears
5. It would be easy to say the worst pick of the draft Joel Iyiegbuniwe, but that's not accurate. My criticism isn't about the player. In fact "Iggy" shows a kind of speed, agility and instinct I really like. It's more the #Bears passed up a big opportunity to help the pass rush.
6. I have to imagine Pace isn't done adding to the edge rush yet. Maybe Lamarr Houston can still be brought back. However, I also expect the #Bears to be active on the waiver wire as the season draws closer in the next few months.
7. Some really cool connections can be drawn out from this draft class:

- Smith and Javon Wims were teammates of Leonard Floyd
- Daniels played Trubisky in high school.
- Bilal Nichols went to Delaware, same as Matt Nagy

8. One of the problems I had last year was Akiem Hicks was often on the field too much. I wanted the #Bears to find a way to ease the workload for him in 2018. Bilal Nichols will help that. This kid has size and athleticism. That's fine. What stands out most? He's violent.
9. Kylie Fitts was not a name I had targeted among top edge rushers for the #Bears. Given Pace's track record with gambling on players with injury histories, I have reservations. #Bears
10. Talk about what a difference a year makes:

Allen Robinson
Taylor Gabriel
Anthony Miller
Kevin White
Bennie Fowler
Marlon Brown
Josh Bellamy
Javon Wims
Tanner Gentry

Talent and depth. Mitch Trubisky is locked and loaded. #Bears
11. Most people will single out LSU corner Kevin Toliver as the best undrafted signing the #Bears made. Talent-wise it's hard to argue. However, I think he might end up getting overshadowed by somebody else....1/2

12. That is Michael Joseph of Dubuque. Weird as it sounds, this kid reminds me of Scottie Pippen. Nobody thought anything of him in college. Yet every year he just continued to get a lot better. What separates him from Toliver? Ballhawk skills. He gets the football. 2/2 #Bears
13. Joseph is 6'1" with speed and athleticism. He had 12 interceptions over his last two seasons. The fact he's an Illinois native makes it all the more fun to see how this goes for him. #Bears
15. Another favorite UDFA is Dejon Allen. The tackle may be from Hawaii, but he's no pushover. Great athlete and a finisher. He might have to move inside but I actually like him more than Jordan Morgan, the #Bears 5th rounder from last year.
16. Final assessment? The #Bears did exactly what they needed to do. They bolstered the weaponry and protection of Trubisky. They stacked the defensive front 7 with capable athletes and still managed to acquire some intriguing CBs to develop. Job well done.
14. The best thing the #Bears can do from their edge rusher standpoint is sign a couple decent veterans to one-year deals and just try to ride it out until next year. Lamarr Houston, Junior Gallette, and Connor Barwin fit that profile.

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