Column: Ryan Poles didn’t mention the receiver as a strong point of this draft. Is this a sign that the Chicago Bears are targeting this position?

If you’re among those who think the Chicago Bears need to add a wide receiver to Justin Fields, you might be reassured by the fact that rookie general manager Ryan Poles didn’t mention the position as a strong area during the second and third days of the draft. NFL. .

Of course, the Poles didn’t want to show their cards just over 48 hours before the draft kicked off on Thursday night. He spoke for about 20 minutes Tuesday afternoon, praising the staff he brought with him and those he inherited at Halas Hall for their diligence in the process without discussing a single player.

Maybe the Poles who didn’t mention the position is a good sign for those demanding a wide receiver with one of the Bears’ two picks in the second round. When asked where he thinks the draft will be strong on Friday (rounds 2-3) and Saturday (rounds 4-7), the Poles named four more groups of positions.

“I would say the depth of the O-line is pretty good,” he said. “Good depth in DB. There are a couple of good defenders. The class of runners may not be the heaviest, but a ton of them is crazy how many runners there are.

“I think a lot of that has to do with the year of COVID. A lot of these guys are hitting back, so from the middle to the bottom, definitely free agents, a huge number of players. That’s why it took so long to install the board not only at the top, but also at the bottom. There are a lot of players on this board.”

Powles has mentioned several times that – in the right position and with the right answer – he’s ready to go down in the draft to add to his current collection of six picks. The Bears own the 39th and 48th numbers in the 2nd round and 71st in the 3rd round. They don’t pick again until number 148 in round 5, and it’s at this big gap that the Poles may want to add spades.

You can also imagine the Poles focusing on offensive and defensive lines in the 2nd round before exploring help from wide receiver where the Bears added Byron Pringle, Equanimus St. Brown and David Moore as free agents.

Powles stated his goal of improving the offensive line when he was hired, and the biggest achievement was the signing of center Lucas Patrick, who was again praised by the general manager for toughness and leadership. Patrick’s expectations should also be shaped by his two-year, $8 million contract.

“Bears” could choose guards to connect to the right side where they are tried to add Ryan Bates as a restricted free agent. Or perhaps they see a future left tackle in Central Michigan’s Bernhard Reimann, Tulsa’s Tyler Smith or Ohio State’s Nicholas Petit-Frere and move Larry Borom inside on defense. The Bears should have been comfortable with the knee problems the teams discussed with Reimann.

If the Poles don’t believe in Borom in the left tackle, Tiven Jenkins in the right tackle and Sam Mastifer in the right back, he should make a move to reinforce the line, which the Bears hope will be significantly better in a new offense with a new staff.

It goes without saying that the Bears would seriously consider adding a defender to one of their best options. They tried to put the most resources into a free agent there before. tearing up a three-year $40.5 million deal with Larry Ogunjobi due to medical concerns. Coach Matt Eberfluth wants to roll out his defensive line in waves with nine players per rotation, so the defense needs talent and depth up front.

Houston’s Logan Hall could be available in round 2 and has the flexibility to play three techniques – where the Bears would use Ogunjobi – as well as other places along the lane. Hall may be similar to DeForest Buckner, who pinned the Eberflux line when he coordinated the defense of the Indianapolis Colts. Teams say that Hall has a minor problem with his ankle, but the impression is that they are not serious.

The Poles did not use the word “perestroika” when discussing the state of the roster they inherited.

“No, perestroika is something super-sensitive,” he said. “No, we are building a very good football team. No matter how you use any term, we just keep adding talent. And young talent, old talent, whatever it takes to build the best team.

“You know, late at night with your wife, you watch TV, you get into a home network where there are several rooms that are good. You may need to redo some countertops here, some fresh paint there. Some of the rooms are good. You don’t need to touch them. There is such a thought process. This is not a reconstruction either.

Maybe he doesn’t want to call it a rebuild, but the Bears are in the early stages of construction and this lineup needs a rebuild. They may attack a wide receiver if they see a dynamic player with the skills to become a top producer on offense. Or the Pole can keep the focus in the trenches, because, as he knows, no good team is built without strength on both sides of the line.

“Every time you just improve the team as a whole, you help all the players,” Powles said when asked about Fields’ support. “It may look different. You could say he needs receivers, receivers, receivers, but he also needs blocking, and he also needs balance in terms of effectively handling the ball and doing it up front.

“And then you can do things in the game, then you can do things. Turnover. Maybe the returnee flip the field to score more points. So everything is connected. That’s why the mindset is to bring the best players into the team. If I get too one-sided and say, “I have to do this particular thing,” I think it will lead to big mistakes.”

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