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Combine Players for Bears to Watch: Thaddeus Moss

Randy Moss' son from LSU is among the best tight ends and a possible player of interest to the Bears, just as his father was 22 years ago

Go back 22 years to the NFL combine and a group of us beat writers who covered the Bears sat with the late Mark Hatley, who made the personnel decisions for the Bears without the GM title.

Hatley told us Randy Moss was a "generational" receiver, the kind who might come around every 20 years. The Bears had the chance to take Moss, but Moss later missed a meeting with Bears coaches in the run up to the draft and said he overslept.

They scratched him off the list and drafted Curtis Enis.

The point here is not that the Bears could made stupid decisions then like they do now except with different people choosing draft picks, although it's true.

Instead, it's to point out that 22 years later they have the chance to draft another Moss, Thaddeus, the tight end from LSU who is Randy's son. 

Hopefully he'll make his meetings.

The Bears need a tight end and Moss has been rated among the best tight ends by ESPN draft guru Mel Kiper as well as numerous other draft analysts.

If your first pick comes in Round 2 like the Bears' does, it's very possible Moss would still be there because there are a few other tight ends projected to be better and likely to go in Round 1 or earlier in Round 2.

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Working on Moss' side was playing for a winning, national championship offense with a good quarterback. He made  key plays and stood out in his final year.

Then again, this could work against him in the draft because scouts might have expected more than the 47 catches for 570 yards and four TDs he had last season, although that is a haul for most college tight ends.

The reason Moss is a player to watch for the Bears goes beyond his name and the ability. 

At the combine Moss' foot will be examined. Medical situations are serious business in Indianapolis. It's been a while now, but after Moss transferred from North Carolina State following the 2016 season, he had to sit out a year and then suffered a fifth metatarsal break on his foot and sat out the 2018 season as well. He had to have two surgeries on the foot and then returned.

So scouts for all teams will be anxious to see how he times out, his strength and agility as well as watch him in the passing drills.

Moss is said in many scouting reports to be a very willing and adept blocker and an excellent receiver. At 6-foot-3, 249 pounds, he isn't a fit for the Bears' in-line tight end spot, their Y-tight end. He's more the a fit for the U-tight end where Taylor Gabriel plays.

On a curious note, NFL.com's scouting report of Moss is complimentary but also points out he has  "get-there-when-I-get-there route temp."

A chip off the old block? Hopefully scouts don't see this type of route running as the on-field equivalent of getting to a meeting when you get there, even if it's late.

Twitter: BearDigest@BearsOnMaven