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Building the Case for Bears to Draft QB Jalen Hurts

If the Chicago Bears trade down they can acquire extra picks to address needs and also select a quarterback to groom for 2021 and beyond by drafting Jalen Hurts

There seems to be a mindset or even insistence across the mock drafting world to get the Bears a tight end.

Maybe it has to do with Matt Nagy stressing how the organization has to get that position right.

Mel Kiper did it in his mock draft this week at No. 43. Draft Wire did it, too. Those mock drafters who aren't right now, at some point were advocating the Bears use a second-round pick for Cole Kmet or Brycen Hopkins.

Here's a different, better use for one of their two second-round picks.

They first find someone first to trade down with for an extra pick or two in Round 3 and/or 4, and maybe still remain in the bottom of Round 2 or early in Round 3, and then they draft Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts.

The Bears can use a third quarterback more than they can use an 11th tight end.

Would Hurts be there for them late in Round 2?

A survey of 11 mock drafters on the internet indicates it's highly likely.

Kevin Hanson of Sports Illustrated, Chad Reuter from NFL.com, ESPN's Mel Kiper and Todd McShay, CBS Sports.com's Ryan Wilson, Vinnie Iyer of the Sporting News, Matt Miller of Bleacher Report and the mocks from the websites Draftwire.com, Drafttek.com, Draftsite.com and Walterfootball.com were used. Only Miller and Kiper had Hurts going in the second round.

Kiper says Hurts goes 49th in Round 2, just before the second Bears pick. Miller says he goes at No. 34.

In fact, Hurts didn't go off the board before No. 75 in Round 3 for eight of the 11 mock drafts.

So the Bears should be fine trading down and taking Hurts while gaining extra picks.

Here is the case for drafting Jalen Hurts:

1. The Athletic Quarterback

The team drafting Hurts will be getting a player with the mobility of a younger Russell Wilson. Hurts ran a 4.59-second 40-yard dash, second fastest among quarterbacks at the combine. He's such a good athlete there were reporters at the combine asking if he'd consider playing a position like Taysom Hill has in New Orleans. He's too good of athlete for that. He doesn't need to bury his head into the chest of defenders and look like a fullback playing quarterback because he'd run right past those tacklers or around them.

2. The Arm

Hurts doesn't just have the arm strength. It's been obvious all along he had this. He has the touch on throws and knows when and how to get the ball there the best way. During the combine workouts, his throws had the right amount of arc and landed softly in receivers' hands in stride even on long bombs—a foreign concept for Bears fans used to seeing Mitchell Trubisky throw deep passes

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3. Quick to Adjust

Hurts transferred from Alabama and coach Nick Saban to Oklahoma and coach Lincoln Riley and rapidly learned a different offense.

"I think being able to adjust, continuing to adjust and adjust to the differences where coach Riley presents himself and how he teaches his stuff, it was very different from what I was used to," Hurts said. "So the biggest deal for me, I didn't know coach Riley, but I was there for 11 months. So trusting him, trusting his system, watching film of those past two guys and just trying to put myself in the best situation to educate.

"I think we made a lot of explosive plays on offense, presented the defenses with different fits with the ability to run the ball from the quarterback position. I know it was very lethal."

4. The Fit in Matt Nagy's Offense

Sure, the more immobile Nick Foles won a Super Bowl running a lot of RPO offense based on Kansas City's attack with Doug Pederson as coach. However, this attack has been it its best with a mobile quarterback. No better example came in Kansas City this year with Patrick Mahomes running from sideline to sideline looking for deep receivers to get open. The attack looked good in Kansas City with Alex Smith running it and he could run. Mitchell Trubisky's lone saving grace in 2018 was his running ability. Those 421 yards rushing made a difference and were 228 more than last year. The Matt Nagy RPO attack works best when the last-option running threat by the quarterback is present.

5. Trubisky Has One Year Left

They'll need a young quarterback to be ready in 2021, if not 2022.

Trubisky's fifth-year option is due in May but it's not guaranteed unless he's injured. They could pick it up and it wouldn't matter.

If Hurts is the player he seems to be, and Foles does an adequate job, Trubisky could simply be allowed to walk.

6. Hurts Helps Financially

Foles isn't breaking the bank now like he did in Jacksonville. If they don't pay the $24 million to Trubisky for the fifth year, they can save a great deal of money against the cap having a young quarterback on his first contract who has taken over as starter by Year 2.

7. Trading Down in Round 2 Addresses Needs

There are three holes in the lineup now and it wouldn't be wasting a pick on Hurts at a non-essential position if they manage to keep both of their first two picks in the second round and pull in one or two extra picks after that. They could then devote the other second-round and third-round pick to a wide receiver and cornerback. If they're able to come up with one other pick in Round 4 or 5, then they can easily find offensive line help and a safety where Pace normally finds a safety on Day 3.

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