DT Aaron Donald dominated Senior Bowl week & could be a Chicago Bears draft target.
The 2014 Senior Bowl week just took place, providing us with some quality new information on several draft prospects that could be of interest to the Chicago Bears (particularly defensive draft prospects in the Bears' case, of course).
Let's go to the links to get caught up about what was learned from the Senior Bowl, as well as taking a look at other notable topics in the world of the Chicago Bears.
Here At DBN
Josh McCown: "My Heart Is In Chicago And That Is Where I Want To Be
Around The Web
Norris: Senior Bowl Review- Rotoworld's NFL Draft expert Josh Norris with a very nice review of the 2014 Senior Bowl in this piece. Norris ranks the top Senior Bowlers from each position following the game (and overall Senior Bowl week), and also ranks the top 25 Senior Bowlers going forward.
And good news for the Bears' draft hopes in regards to Norris' rankings: His top five Senior Bowlers moving forward are all on the defensive side of the ball. (Josh Norris; Rotoworld)
Senior Bowl Wrapup: Winners And Losers From The Week Of Practice- Yahoo's Eric Edholm breaks down the winners and losers from Senior Bowl Week. Among Edholm's winners are Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald and Northern Illinois safety Jimmy Ward, two players that are likely on the Bears' draft radar.
Here's what Edholm has to say about Donald:
It was a banner week for Donald, and when we asked him Wednesday if he was just showing off at that point, he couldn't help but laugh. Donald consistently won one-on-one drills for three days of practice and was easily the most destructive interior lineman in Mobile, putting questions about his size (6-foot, 288) to the side. Watch the tape.
And his take on Ward:
Although Ward is not big, he will leave Mobile as the best safety from this group with a strong week of play from start to finish. He didn't make any true flash plays but was around the ball consistently, and his ability to cover the slot adds to his attractiveness. (Eric Edholm; Yahoo's Shutdown Corner)
Refocused: North vs South, 2014 Senior Bowl- The Pro Football Focus tape review of the Senior Bowl, which even included them grading the players as they do for NFL games. And like Eric Edholm, PFF's Steve Palazzolo came away extremely impressed by Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald, giving Donald a +6.4 overall grade for the game.
Palazzolo has a very nice breakdown of Donald's performance and much more from the NFL Draft showcase game, so make sure to give this a read. (Steve Palazzolo; Pro Football Focus)
10 Takeaways From The Senior Bowl- Adam Hoge with 10 in-depth thoughts after being at the Senior Bowl, with his No. 1 takeaway being that Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron made a bad choice by skipping out on the game. (Adam Hoge; 670 The Score)
Durkin: Senior Bowl Stock Report- Dan Durkin with a fantastic breakdown of the players whose stock rose, and whose stock fell after the Senior Bowl. (Dan Durkin; 670 The Score)
Five Senior Bowlers Who Could Fill Bears' Needs- Adam Hoge takes a Bears-specific look at the Senior Bowl, revealing five players that could fill the Bears' needs. One of my personal favorites is on Hoge's list, in Colorado State center Weston Richburg. I went to CSU myself and am a diehard fan of the Rams, so I've seen Richburg play most all of his college games; he really could be a great young replacement for Roberto Garza.(Adam Hoge; 670 The Score)
Bears Need DTs, But Whom They Pick Will Depend On Their Scheme- When talking about defensive tackle prospects the Bears could look at, we have to remember that we don't even know for sure what scheme the Bears will use on defense in 2014. The general feeling is that the Bears will not go with specifically a 4-3 or 3-4 defense, but a hybrid defense that shifts between 4-3 and 3-4 looks. If that's the case, the Bears are going to want defensive tackles that can transcend scheme, especially if it's an early-round pick.
Patrick Finley takes a look at some of the Senior Bowl defensive tackles and how they could fit in to what the Bears may do schematically on defense. (Patrick Finley; Chicago Sun-Times)
NFL Draft: Numbers Show Safeties, Defensive Tackles Good To Target Early- 670 The Score's Rick Camp with A+, in-depth stuff on how the safety and defensive tackle position (two of the Bears' biggest positions of need) have shown to be two of the highest-impact positions among early draft picks in recent years. (Rick Camp; 670 The Score)
Safety First For Bears? Florida State's Brooks Impresses- So, with the safety position in mind, how about Florida State safety Terrence Brooks for the Bears? Dan Wiederer writes about Brooks and adds that "the Bears are among the teams he has interviewed with here at the Senior Bowl." Chicago Tribune)
NIU's Jimmie Ward Could Be Bears Safety Who Doesn't Miss- Jimmie Ward, a guy we talked about earlier, could also be a Bears target at safety in the draft. (Patrick Finley; Chicago Sun-Times)
6 Late-Round Sleepers Who Would Be Perfect For The Bears- (Matt Eurich; Bleacher Report)
Bears Look To The Future At Center- Brad Biggs has more on Weston Richburg and how he could be of interest to the Bears. (Brad Biggs; Chicago Tribune)
A New Bears Defensive Era Is Here- Must-read stuff from Adam Hoge. (Adam Hoge; 670 The Score)
How Far Are The Bears From Being A Super Bowl Contender?- With Super Bowl week taking place, Sam Householder examines how far the Bears are away from being a true Super Bowl contender. (Sam Householder; Windy City Gridiron)
Charles Tillman Will Test Free Agency- "The Pro Bowl cornerback's (Charles Tillman) contract expires after the 2013 season, and Tillman will test the free-agent waters, NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Saturday, per a source with knowledge of the player's thinking.
Tillman might return to the Bears, Rapoport added, but Tillman never has been a true free agent, so he will explore his options." (Mike Coppinger; NFL.Com)
Martellus Bennett Hopes To Lure Brother To Bears- Martellus Bennett wants to recruit his brother, Seahaswks defensive end Michael Bennett to the Bears. It's expected the Bears will show interest in Michael, but the free-agent defensive end recently said that he doesn't like the cold so he doesn't see the Bears in his future. Hopefully Martellus can change that thinking. (Patrick Finley; Chicago Sun-Times)
Chicago Bears Pro Bowl Recap- Bear Goggles On's Mike Flannery recaps how the Bears' Pro Bowl participants did in the game. (Mike Flannery; Bear Goggles On)
Tweet Of The Day
I really want my brother to come to Chicago so that I can pitch this idea to M&M. Michael & Martellus special blue and orange M&Ms. Lol
— Martellus Bennett (@MartysaurusRex) January 27, 2014
Video Of The Day
Senior Bowl highlights:
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