Caleb Williams

Why did the Bears request a top-30 visit with Caleb Williams this early? Let's read the tea leaves

It could be for a couple of reasons ...

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In preparation for the 2024 NFL draft, the Bears --- oddly --- have tried to bring in players for their top-30 visits.

Starting with Caleb Williams, according to Albert Breer.

But, why? Most teams don't start bringing in players for their top 30 visits until the end of March or the beginning of April. Why are the Bears trying to bring Williams to Halas Hall this early?

First, let's start with the basics. What's a top-30 visit? Leading up to the draft, all 32 NFL teams are allowed to bring 30 players on individual visits to their facilities for a private meeting. A team's top-30 visit list is for exclusive players the team is interested in drafting.

Of course, Williams is on the list. But the desire to bring the USC product to Halas Hall this early draws questions. Why are the Bears rushing him in? It should be mentioned, that the Bears will now host him shortly after his pro day on March 20. He won't be at Halas Hall this early.

General manager Ryan Poles explained to the media at the NFL Combine that he wants to "do right by" Justin Fields if the team wants to trade him. Poles wants Fields on a new team ahead of NFL free agency's opening on March 13. That way, Fields gets a fresh start as early as possible.

To do that, the Bears need to collect all the information necessary as quickly as possible. That means getting Williams in for an early top-30 visit, even though that no longer will be happening. The Bears are in data analysis mode, turning over every stone possible.

But there's another reason the Bears might've requested that visit early.

It falls under the same umbrella as the team's data collecting. Williams didn't complete his medical examinations at the NFL Combine --- a move NFL prospects don't usually pull when they attend the combine.

But when Williams visits the Bears, he'll do his medical examinations with them, giving them the information they need before drafting him. Williams told reporters at the combine he didn't want to go through the unnecessary hassle of doing medical exams for all 32 teams. He will, as he said, complete exams for teams that are interested and able to draft him.

The Bears have been diligent in their data collecting. Outside of the measurables, they've gathered information from Williams' teammates, Kliff Kingsbury, and from their collective interview with him at the NFL Combine.

All signs point to him becoming the Bears' next quarterback. So the real question remains --- when will the Bears trade Fields? And what will the return be? Stay tuned.

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