1. Kendall Wright - WR/KR, Baylor (Walterfootball.com)
WHY IT'S GONNA HAPPEN: The Bears still think that if there are any missing pieces to their offense, they're all at wide receiver.This, of course, ignores glaring weaknesses at center, left guard, right guard, left tackle, and maybe right tackle, too. This is standard procedure at this point, so what can you do? Still, I guess it almost makes sense for once, because even with Brandon Marshall in town, the thought of having two real-ass starting receivers is something the Bears haven't had in forever, and if Cutler has a bunch of guys that defenses actually have to bother covering, they can't just bank on sacking him ten times a game.I'm sure they'll come close, but eight or nine, tops.
WHY IT'S NOT GONNA HAPPEN: Wrong place at the wrong time. If Michael Floyd or various defensive linemen are there, they'll go that way first. Also, a Google Image Search for Kendall Wright throws up "kendall wright fat" as a related search, so clearly there are clearly problems with his conditioning. Clearly.
WHY IT'S GONNA HAPPEN: It seems like the big pre-draft buzz relating to the Chicago Bears is mostly around Whitney Mercilus and this guy, but for most of the early going, this guy. Between Floyd and Wright, everyone wants Floyd, because he's the one everyone expects to blow up into a potential number one guy, which might be something the Bears need at this point. Because you never know if or when Brandon Marshall and his wife are going to start stabbing each other or pushing each other down the stairs or dropping anvils on each other or whatever, and with Johnny Knox a big question mark from here on out, a disaster with him would lead to Earl Bennett as the Bears' top guy. And I like Bennett, but he's not that guy. Also, oh man, this would mark the first time the Bears have had two receivers that everyone was scared of since the 1995 Bears faked being good and Jeff Graham and Curtis Conway ruled the land. Oh man.
WHY IT'S NOT GONNA HAPPEN: He's not gonna be available. There's not many first-round wide receiver prospects, and due to NFL regulations, only one team gets to draft Justin Blackmon. Floyd might not make it out of the top ten.
3. Dontari Poe - DT, Memphis (Charlie Casserly at NFL.com)
WHY IT'S GONNA HAPPEN: For the first time in years, the Bears aren't so paper-thin at nearly all positions that they can actually draft to get better players at positions that aren't complete travesties, so defensive tackle is an option. And a big, beastly nose tackle to clog up offenses would be the perfect thing to throw next to Henry Melton, allowing him to go nuts with that "pressure up the middle" that Cover-2 defenses love so much. Because if you can get pressure up the middle, you take away an offense's ability to throw a hundred blockers at Urlacher and Peppers. Plus, pressure up the middle is its own reward anyway, which sounds so, so very dirty.
WHY IT'S NOT GONNA HAPPEN: The Bears are already on the verge of having defensive tackle be a team strength, with Henry Melton blowing up last year and the looming potential of Stephen Paea blowing up this year. Losing Amobi Okoye sucks, but I'm not sure that losing the fourth guy in the rotation is something worth blowing a first on. Even if we're going best player available, there are best players available at positions the Bears need more.
Baltimore Sun, others)
WHY IT'S GONNA HAPPEN: Israel Idonije is on the decline, Julius Peppers will probably start declining sometime soon, and the Bears don't have much else to get excited about at defensive end. And the Bears haven't had two defensive ends on the team at the same time who could rush the passer since the storied duo of Trace Armstrong and Richard Dent, (or Alonzo Spellman, if we're being generous) plus picking up a guy from the same college wearing the same number as Julius Peppers is just a good story, you know? He could be the Darth Vader to Peppers's Emperor Palpatine, or in Armchair Linebacker terms, the Unterklaw to his Uberklaw. Also, the related search term that Google Image Search threw up at me was "quinton coples SCAR," and holy shit, that's perfect.
WHY IT'S NOT GONNA HAPPEN: Same story as Michael Floyd. He'll probably make it out of the top ten, but not all the way to #19.
5. Stephon Gilmore - CB, South Carolina (Chad Reuter at NFL.com, DraftTek.com, DraftCountdown.com)
WHY IT'S GONNA HAPPEN: The Bears really aren't doing badly at cornerback at all right now, but Charles Tillman isn't getting any younger, and the Bears might never admit to themselves that Tim Jennings isn't a piece of shit. And hell, even if they ever do realize that Jennings is an actual worthwhile football player, he's still got the strike against him of being a tiny little dude. So in Gilmore, you get a big, physical corner who matches up with monsters like Calvin Johnson in ways that are faster and ten years younger than the ways Charles Tillman does it. And with new GM Phil emery's new-fangled strategy of having position depth consisting of more than just random dudes from the bus station, you can do a whole helluva lot worse than having Jennings, D.J. Moore, and Kelvin Hayden as your backup corners.
WHY IT'S NOT GONNA HAPPEN: He might jump all the way into the top ten by the time the actual draft happens, and if he falls, the pessimist in me says it would make too much sense, now that I've kind of talked myself into liking the idea. Also, I'm with the rest of the world in being convinced that the next guy is whose ass the Bears are fully stuck inside.
6. Whitney Mercilus - DE, Illinois (Brian Baldinger at NFL.com)
After hella internet articles and radio chatter about the Bears being high on this guy, inviting him to Chicago and all, it kind of shocked me to only see one mock drafter go with him as the Bears' guy. Because really, at this point, you'd think that the only way they'd pass on him was if Coples was still available, and some seem to think Mercilus might last into the early twenties. And god damn, if he's there at #19, look at the dude's name. It's pronounced the same as "merciless," and somehow looks even more evil spelled wrong. Can you imagine the sort of stupid-ass internet hell I could raise around here if the Bears teamed The Uberklaw up with Whtiney the Merciless? I could spin all sorts of weird tales of dark villainy, and it's just too bad that in between all these undead Dark Lords and wild island savages the Bears have stocked their defensive linemen with, that Henry Melton has to have a name that sounds like a dude who would join a volunteer fire department and maybe run for deputy sheriff. I know he's a good player and all, but maybe for weird internet football literary purposes, we could just work out a deal with Vince McMahon to trade Melton to the WWE for Lord Tensai.
7. Jonathan Martin - OT, Stanford (Don Banks at Sports Illustrated)
WHY IT'S GONNA HAPPEN: Because J'Marcus Webb is horrible and Gabe Carimi has been one big, giant, human injury so far.
WHY IT'S NOT GONNA HAPPEN: Mike Tice loves J'Marcus Webb as much as God hates me.
8 and 9. Riley Reiff - OT, Iowa (Gabe Zaldivar at the Bleacher Report) and Mike Adams - OT, Ohio State (FootballDraftNotebook.com)
WHY IT IS/ISN'T GONNA HAPPEN: FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, DON'T MAKE ME TALK ABOUT THE STUPID TERRIBLE OFFENSIVE LINE ANYMORE, WHEN WILL IT STOP OH GOD ASFHJSFDJHSRKWDFJHSDF ASFJDHASFASF QWETRRHG SNAKES. I'm so tired, so very tired. And the Bears just signed Chilo Rachal, so hey, PROBLEM SOLVED. *shoots self*
10. Michael Brockers - DT/DE, LSU (Jonathan Bales at the New York Times, NFLDraftDog.com, NewNFLDraft.com)
WHY IT'S GONNA HAPPEN: Hey, the Bears want a defensive tackle. They also want a defensive end. WHY NOT TAKE A GUY WHO DOES BOTH? And the dude is one of the more monstrous physical specimens in the draft, so if he even becomes half the player he looks like he should be able to become, he'll be pretty damn good. Also, when it's not all gnarled up and weird looking, his beard looks like the kind that dudes who play his position stopped having in the mid to late 1980s.
WHY IT'S NOT GONNA HAPPEN: Another one-year wonder like Mercilus, plus one that probably left school way too early. That being said, no one knows what to make of him, whether he'll be a 3-4 defensive end or a 4-3 defensive tackle, and no one can seem to decide whether he'll he end up being drafted just outside the top ten or almost in the second round as a result. The Bears are still paying for all the gambling in the early rounds that they spent the last decade doing, and once again, tackle isn't a huge need right now.
FINAL ANALYSIS: Expecting Mercilus or Wright, hoping for Gilmore, and performing voodoo rituals to somehow ensnare the minds of the previous 18 teams in the draft, to make them all pass on David DeCastro.