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Denied by the Niners Again

Whether the Bears had more than a passing interest in Mac Jones isn't known but they did talk to him for about an hour and if they had interest it doesn't seem to matter now if San Francisco takes him at No. 3.

It's very easy to wonder if John Lynch and the San Francisco 49ers have beaten Bears GM Ryan Pace to the draft day punch again.

The 49ers have moved up to third in the draft from 12th, but it's obvious the Bears have interest in Alabama quarterback Mac Jones after their discussion with him and the way they've kept an eye on him.

"In terms of the Bears, yeah, I met with them," Jones said during his pro day Zoom interview, which was held Monday in advance of Tuesday's second Crimson Tide pro day. "It was a really great meeting.

"We just talked football for like an hour straight. That’s the best type of meeting for me, is just talking ball. So hopefully I'll get a chance to talk with them more and see where that relationship kind of heads as well."

Jones very well could be the target for the 49ers at No. 3. 

Then again, maybe he isn't.

The Niners have had a way of frustrating the Bears GM ever since Lynch dangled the second pick of the 2017 draft and Pace paid the ransom so he could draft Mitchell Trubisky.

On March 30, 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan and Lynch are attending Mac's workout instead of going to the Ohio State pro day where Justin Fields will work out, according to NBC's Peter King.

"I mean there's going to be a bunch of different teams there and that's really good to hear that the 49ers are going to be there," Jones said.

Jones said he has talked to approximately 20 teams so far. 

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He added he's familiar with the 49ers style offense and enjoyed running bootleg passes like they'll often run, even though Alabama didn't do a lot of this.

The entire situation sounds like the Niners moved up because they identified Jones as their guy and made a pre-emptive strike to prevent teams like the Bears from moving up for a guy they wanted.

Or is it simply a case where they have interest in someone else and they're throwing people off by going to the workout? Do they already know they're taking Fields and are just doing due diligence with Jones?

This wouldn't make much sense since they now have the No. 3 pick and everyone is fairly certain who will go before that—Trevor Lawrence and Zach Wilson. It's not like someone is trading up with the 49ers now and giving them more than they already paid to be No. 3.

"Now that you're up at 3, you don't have to hide as much," Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer said Shanahan commented.

You pretty much have to take the Niners' word now.

The Bears, back at No. 20, never would have had the trade ammunition to move up to No. 3 anyway. 

At least they wouldn't have had what they needed if what the 49ers surrendered to Miami for the move up was indicative of what needed to be paid. The Niners only went up nine spots and traded their own 12th pick overall, two more first-round picks and a third rounder. 

What could the Bears have possibly done with the 20th pick? 

It sounds like for the Bears, Jones was merely a good talk and they can log that away for the future when he's a free agent. Maybe they could visit this again. 

Twitter: BearDigest@BearsOnMaven