2024 NFL Draft

Bears trade down twice in latest mock draft

Bears general manager Ryan Poles once again commits to Justin Fields in our latest mock draft

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Creating content for our weekly mock drafts feels like taking a dip into the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Multiverse (MCU). In the MCU’s Multiverse, characters might look the same but differ slightly from one mirroring universe to the next. So, Spider-Man is a good guy in one universe but an evil villain in another realm. 

Each new mock draft resembles the previous week’s version. Yet, there are slight alterations, with similar players finding themselves traded and transported to other organizations, creating alternate variations in the ”NFL Universe.”

So, “what if '' the Bears trade down twice? How about the Broncos moving up ten spots? The options seem endless, so enjoy this week’s new “alternate” mock draft.

NOTE: For the draft order, we used tankathon.com's projected draft order.

1. New England Patriots (via Carolina) (via Chicago): QB - Caleb Williams, USC

It’s possible Chicago Bears general manager, Ryan Poles, passes on another highly rated quarterback, trading down to acquire more draft capital and talented prospects.

The Bears could move the first overall pick to the Patriots for a significant haul. Chicago would then acquire New England’s third pick in the first round; 68th pick (3rd); 139th pick (4th); plus 2025’s first and second round picks, too.

Currently, New England possesses approximately 68 million in cap space and might surmise they could acquire enough free agents to make up for the loss in draft picks. Plus, with an experienced team supporting a rookie quarterback, the goal of reaching the playoffs may seem realistic.

2. Washington Commanders: QB - Drake Maye, North Carolina

Taking a talented signal caller with franchise potential might be the shift in the direction new ownership in Washington pursues. Maye checks off a lot of boxes, possessing the requisite NFL size (6’4” - 230 lbs), solid accuracy (career 64.9 percent), and a touchdown/interception ratio of 63 to 16.

3. Atlanta Falcons (via New England) (via Chicago): QB - Jayden Daniels, LSU

Arguably, many pundits believe the Falcons lacked competent and consistent quarterback play last season. Atlanta may seize an opportunity to move up in the draft and possibly take Daniels, an extremely athletic and dynamic signal caller.

In order to select Daniels, Atlanta might offer Chicago its eighth overall pick (1st), followed by its 74th (3rd) and 145th (5th). The Falcons finalize this potential trade by including their 2025 first and third-round spots. Pairing Daniels with Atlanta’s explosive skill players (Bijan Robinson, Kyle Pitts, and Drake London) could make them immediately dangerous in a wide-open NFC South division.

4. Arizona Cardinals: WR - Marvin Harrison Jr., Ohio State

Should the aforementioned scenarios occur, Arizona would likely breathe a sigh of relief if Atlanta slid into the third spot and chose a quarterback (Daniels). The Falcons’ trade with the Bears essentially removed the possibility of Chicago selecting Harrison with the third pick. By targeting Marvin Harrison, an elite can’t-miss prospect, and pairing him with Murray, the Cardinals could expedite their designs to be Super Bowl-worthy. A tremendous downfield weapon, Harrison averaged 16.9 yard per catch on 155 career receptions with 31 receiving scores.

5. Los Angeles Chargers: TE - Brock Bowers, Georgia

Bowers is a matchup conundrum for most defensive coordinators attempting to curtail his effectiveness on the field. An athletic pass catcher, he can also align anywhere on the field, leveraging his size against smaller pass defenders. Los Angeles is in an enviable position to possibly choose a prospect that is as difficult a matchup as any player in this draft class. 

6. New York Giants: OT - Joe Alt, Notre Dame

Alt possesses uncommon athleticism and agility for a man his size (6’8”, 315 lbs). Impressive lateral quickness helps Alt gain leverage at the point of attack, while his balance and grip strength allow him to manipulate pass rushers away from the quarterback. Over the last two seasons, Alt performed in 1600 plus snaps and surrendered just one quarterback sack.

7. Tennessee Titans: CB - Kool-Aid McKinstry, Alabama

Unfortunately, Caleb Farley, a former 2021 first-round pick at cornerback, has been derailed by injuries in his brief pro career (12 games/ 2 starts). If the Titans decline to pick up the option year on his rookie contract, Tennessee may draft defensive secondary standout McKinstry, who also possesses punt return skills (11.9 career average per return). The Titans punt return unit ranked in the league’s lower third (7.9) during the 2023 campaign.

8. Chicago Bears (via - Atlanta): WR - Rome Odunze, Washington

Should the Bears perspective trades with New England (#3, #68, #139, 2025 1st and 2nd rounds) and Atlanta (#8, #74, #145, 2025 1st and 3rd rounds) eventually land them in the eighth spot, it’s possible they target All-American wideout, Rome Odunze.

His ability to track long passes over either shoulder makes him a deep threat defenses shouldn’t underestimate. In addition to potentially acquiring Odunze, Chicago would also stand to gain several draft picks over the next two seasons, dramatically infusing the Bears with high-end, talented prospects.

9. Chicago Bears: Edge - Laiatu Latu, UCLA

An immensely talented defender, Latu overcame a serious and potentially career-ending neck injury in the Fall of 2020. After transferring from Washington to UCLA, Latu returned to the gridiron, eventually becoming the Pac-12’s last Defensive Player of the Year (21.5 tackles for loss /13 sacks). If Chicago drafts Latu, they could pair him opposite All-Pro Montez Sweat, the Bears sack leader (6) in 2023.

10. New York Jets: OT - Olu Fashanu, Penn State

Fashanu is surprisingly athletic for his size (6 '6, 321 lbs), exhibiting fluid agility and ability to effortlessly flip his hips when blocking speed rushers. New York should strongly consider selecting Fashanu as a blindside protector with day one starting potential.

11. Minnesota Vikings: QB - Michael Penix Jr., Washington

Since his arrival in Washington, Penix has been a model of efficiency and production. During his time as a Husky, he completed 65.3 percent of his passes for 9,544 yards and 67 touchdowns while winning 25 of 28 games.

12. Denver Broncos: QB - Bo Nix, Oregon

In targeting Nix, is it possible Denver head coach Sean Payton envisions him to be his next “Drew Brees?” Nix is extremely accurate (they led the nation with a 77.4 completion percentage), efficient (45 touchdowns to three interceptions), and athletic (six rushing scores).

13. Las Vegas Raiders: CB - Nate Wiggins, Clemson

Wiggins is a long and lean pass defender with quick feet but plays with patience when tracking receivers. He moves with excellent spatial awareness and a knack for turning interceptions into pick-six scores. Wiggins only tallied three career interceptions; however, two resulted in touchdowns totaling 144 yards.

14. New Orleans Saints: WR - Malik Nabers, LSU

The Saints may be one receiver away from being as explosive an offensive unit as there is in the NFC. Nabers is a tactical route-runner who unfailingly catches passes away from his body with confident hands.

15. Indianapolis Colts: Edge - Dallas Turner, Alabama

A balanced pass-rushing talent, Turner is effective at blitzing the passer, setting the edge against perimeter runs, and dropping into underneath coverage zones. Schematically, he might fit perfectly into what the Colts do defensively, making him a potential plug-and-play consideration.

16. Seattle Seahawks: DB - Cooper DeJean, Iowa

The Seahawks’ secondary performed inconsistently this past season. In addition, safeties like Quandre Diggs and Julian Love will become unrestricted free agents in 2025. Extremely versatile and skilled, DeJean is an athletic defensive back who could literally play any secondary position. If he is available in the mid-first round, the Seahawks may be sufficiently intrigued with the ball-hawking Hawkeye. 

17. Jacksonville Jaguars: DL - Jer’Zhan Newton, Illinois

Extremely quick and purposeful with his movements, Newton sheds blocks with efficiency and flows toward ball carriers on running plays. He is equally effective in applying pressure on quarterbacks running from option-style plays or attempting downfield passes.

18. Cincinnati Bengals: WR - Keon Coleman, Florida State

So, with Cincinnati wideouts Tyler Boyd and Tee Higgins being unrestricted free agents, it's possible the frugal Bengals will only re-sign one of the two. Coleman’s size (6’4” - 215 lbs), versatility as a punt returner (300 yards / 12.0 per return), youth, and affordability potentially make him an ideal replacement for either receiver.

19. Los Angeles Rams: Edge - Jared Verse, Florida State

Scouts continually comment on the explosive playmaking of Verse, an impressive pass rusher whose first step instigates disruptive results. The Rams' 41 sacks ranked in the league’s lower third while also tying for the eighth worst (127) in generated quarterback pressures. Verse averaged nine sacks over the past two seasons.

20. Pittsburgh Steelers: OT - Taliese Fuaga, Oregon State

Fuaga is a limber six-foot-six, 334-pound pass protector whose knee-bending flexibility allows him to stay leveraged behind his pad level. He possesses enough alignment versatility to block as an interior or bookend lineman. In over 1500 plus snaps, Fuaga has never surrendered a sack and provides immediate impact as a run-blocking mauler.

21. Miami Dolphins: OL - Troy Fautanu, Washington

Fautanu possesses an uncommon vertical jump (32 inches) for most offensive linemen at his size (6’4” - 317 lbs), indicating an innate explosiveness that intrigues many scouts. Miami needs versatile linemen with hyper-athletic skills to block effectively and keep pace in its high-octane offense.

22. Philadelphia Eagles: CB - Terrion Arnold, Alabama

Deflatingly, the Eagles ranked second worst in overall passing yards allowed (4296), total air yards per completion (2614), and aerial scores (35 touchdowns). Targeting talented cover corners like Arnold (61 tackles / 11 passes defended / five interceptions) should be first on their list in April’s NFL Draft.

23. Houston Texans [via - Cleveland]: Edge - Demeioun “Chop” Robinson, Penn State

Houston must contend with 27 unrestricted free-agent contracts and may have difficulties affording three edge rushers from that group. An economical option for the Texans might be Robinson, a three-down defender with uncommon alignment versatility. 

24. Dallas Cowboys: OT - J.C. Latham, Alabama

Latham allowed only two sacks and nine hurries this season and performed at an above-average rate (81.9), according to PFF. Veteran offensive tackle Tyron Smith’s salary (12 million) may have outpriced his production, possibly opening the door for Latham to become an economical solution.

25. Green Bay Packers: OT - Amarius Mims, Georgia

Mims moves with decent fluidity and balance, yet his powerful upper body provides the strength to out-leverage defenders. The Packers have incurred some frontline injuries over the past few years and could use quality depth throughout the offensive line.

26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: WR - Brian Thomas Jr., LSU

Every year, there are late risers to many draft boards as more productive yet lesser-hyped players finally get noticed. Based on Thomas’ exemplary 2023 season (68 receptions / 1177 receiving yards / 17 touchdowns), he is an amazing talent with unlimited upside.

27. Arizona Cardinals (via Houston): Quinyon Mitchell, Toledo

Mitchell, a six-foot, 196-pound corner from Toledo, is one of the best defensive backs and most anonymous defenders in the country. He effectively dominated the MAC Conference these past two seasons, having posted 82 tackles, 37 pass deflections, and six interceptions (two returned for scores). 

28. Kansas City Chiefs: OT - Jordan Morgan, Arizona

An above-average athlete, Morgan’s quick, decisive punches generally cause pass rushers to pause mid-rush and readjust their angles of attack. The Chiefs have experienced inconsistent results from both veteran offensive tackles. Maybe targeting Morgan sends a message while fortifying protection for the quarterback.

29. Buffalo Bills: Edge - Bralen Trice, Washington

Buffalo employs four pass-rushing defenders who will become unrestricted free agents at the season’s end. The Bills’ defense requires pressure from the perimeter, so they may strongly consider drafting a multitalented edge rusher like Trice. In his last 28 games, Trice accounted for 23.5 tackles for loss and 16 sacks.

30. Detroit Lions: Edge - J.T. Tuimoloau, Ohio State

Since Detroit’s defense struggled to generate enough pressure in order to close out opposing offenses, there may be a focus on acquiring another high-end edge rusher. Highly productive, Tuimoloau registered 21 tackles for loss, 11 sacks and seven passes defended over 36 collegiate games.

31. San Francisco 49ers: S - Kamren Kinchens, Miami (FL)

Kinchens is the type of versatile defensive back San Francisco covets. An intelligent surveyor of the field, Kinchens’ instincts and preparation are integral to his success. In his last 22 games played, Kinchens has tabulated 118 total tackles with 11 interceptions and 11 defended passes.

32. Baltimore Ravens: WR - Xavier Legette, South Carolina

There have been durability concerns and spotty production with Baltimore’s receivers over the past several seasons. Should the Ravens target Legette, they’ll acquire a physical six-foot-three, 227-pound boundary wideout with a playing style comparable to the Eagles’ primary receiver, A.J. Brown. An exceptional athlete, Legette set the school record for kick-off return yards, averaging 29.4 per return last season.

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