Chicago Bears Free Agency Analysis and Predictions

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New York Giants

Well, that escalated quickly.

GM Phil Emery followed up his amazing opening act last season with an equally impressive performance in the first few hours of this year’s free agency period.

About 60 minutes after the opening bell, former Giants tight end Martellus Bennett was watching the ink dry on his new four-year deal with the Bears. The terms of Bennett’s contract have not yet been disclosed.

A few hours later, ESPN’s Adam Schefter confirmed that former Saints Pro Bowl left tackle Jermon Bushrod would be joining Bennett in the Windy City on a five-year, $36 million deal, making him the highest paid offensive lineman in team history. [Read more…]

Chicago Bears mock draft composite part 1

DJ Fluker

Mock drafts come a dime a dozen these days, and projections seem to change by the minute. Since the NFL Draft Combine started a few days ago, you can expect every draft expert to be shuffling prospect’s names all over their big boards as their stock rises or falls.

It’s still way too early to make a concrete prediction as to who the Bears will pick with the 20th overall pick on April 25th, but there are some definite trends starting to emerge in terms of names being linked to that pick.

It’s no secret that the main concerns for the Bears include the offensive line, linebackers, the offensive line, tight ends, and the offensive line. Did I mention the offensive line?

A quick trek through the internet will confirm this: almost every expert has an offensive lineman, linebacker, or tight end going to the Bears in the first round in their respective mock drafts.

To save you the arduous task of Google searching for multiple mock drafts, I’ve compiled a list of multiple projections from some of the most notable draft experts around. (View this site’s 1st round mock draft)

Granted, this list may change 10 seconds after this article gets published. But at the very least, we can see some of the early popular Bears mock draft picks for who may be heading to the Windy City.

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2012 NFL Draft – Top Linebackers

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Notre Dame’s Biggest Strength: Possibly Defensive Front 7

In last season’s wins over Utah, Army and USC, the Notre Dame defense allowed an average of just 233.3 yards per game. In the first nine games of the season, the Fighting Irish allowed 393.1 yards per game. After surrendering 20+ points in six of the first nine contests in 2010, the Irish rebounded from their 4-5 start to go 4-0 down the stretch (including the Sun Bowl win over Miami). In that undefeated stretch, they averaged less than 10 ppg against.

The growth and development of the defense is one reason many college football pundits are very high on the Irish this season; and it starts with their fearsome front seven.

[Read more…]