The media makes the biggest mistake in recent NFL history seem like it would have to be the Bears trading up to number two and drafting the QB out of North Carolina, rather than staying at three and picking whoever else.
As Bears fans we can’t help but think about what could’ve happened if we would’ve traded up and picked either Mahomes or Watson, two QBs who are fantastic and surely top 10 quarterbacks with the way their careers have gone.
That being said, most people fail to realize that it was very unlikely for Bears to take a QB that wasn’t Mitchell Trubisky. The simple fact that they just signed QB Mike Glennon to a three-year, $45 million contract drastically decreased the Bears chances of drafting a QB.
Secondly, it is unrealistic to assume that Watson and Mahomes would’ve reached the elite level of play that they are currently at in their careers with Chicago, due to the way that the Bears groomed Trubisky. As we all know, Mitchell Trubisky was a guy who started 13 games in college and walked into a horrible situation in the NFL.
The team consisted of the worst offensive roster I have ever seen in my entire life. That offense’s skills positions was made up of of three players who are still in the league as of today (JH, Cohen, Shaheen) and a bunch of other guys who are probably running car washes right now. Not only that, but their head coach is currently out of the league. So not only is it unrealistic to think that the Bears wouldn’t have botched the grooming of the other QBs in that draft, let alone draft them in the first place.
When reflecting on the past NFL draft classes, people tend to overlook at how hard it is to draft the next franchise QB. Out of the past 10 QBs drafted first in their class, four are currently out of the league (not all due to retirement). One is already retired, and the last one almost broke the single season INT record last year, and then that leaves only four that are currently starting for the their respective teams.
What would the Bears look like if they never went down the path of drafting the QB out of North Carolina? Here’s the most likely scenario for the Bears if they don’t decide to trade up for Trubisky:
The Bears stay at pick number three and draft Solomon Thomas, a guy who has accounted for 6 sacks in his NFL career (considering that the 49ers take Trubisky because they’re obviously looking for a QB because only months later they would make a trade to bring Jimmy G to California). With the hole at QB in the following season it would be realistic that the Bears would be looking at either Josh Allen or Josh Rosen, two QBs that don’t exactly scream “franchise quarterback.” They most likely don’t make the playoffs in 2018 or pull off the Khalil Mack trade that summer.
Photo credit: Bears Wire