With Andy Dalton anointed as the starting QB for the 2021 season, the Bears day 2 QB options are coming into sharp focus as draft day fast approaches. With the big five already long drafted before the Bears select on day one, there are two quarterbacks likely to be the focus of Chicago’s front office.
If the San Francisco 49ers trade up with the Miami Dolphins to the number 3 pick tells us anything, it’s that the search for an elite NFL quarterback is a heated, and often expensive, endeavour. However, with limited draft capital on tap, Chicago’s hopes of moving into the heady picks of the top-6 are all but impossible.
While Ryan Pace isn’t averse to making crazy decisions to try and land his QB, the addition of Andy Dalton seems to have all but ended that urgent round 1 gambit. So the Bears day 2 QB evaluation will have begun in earnest with two quarterbacks firmly in their crosshairs: Florida’s Kyle Trask, and Texas A&M’s Kellen Mond.
BEARS DAY 2 QB OPTIONS: KYLE TRASK
With 4,278 yards, 43 touchdowns, and 8 interceptions, Trask put up some gaudy numbers in the Gator’s loaded offense last season. He’s leap from 2019 stands out as one of the more dramatic improvements in college football, and if he has another leap like that in him he could be an elite talent.
However, he was surrounded with quality pieces, and when two of those were missing in the bowl game he came crashing down to earth somewhat. While he can make all the throws (who can’t these days) and boasts and a strong arm he lacks an elite cannon. But all of these things just say why he’s one of the Bears day 2 QB options. If he ticked all the boxes he’d be a day 1 selection.
BEARS DAY 2 QB OPTIONS: KELLEN MOND
While Kyle Trask received very little attention coming out of high school, Kellen Mond received more than 15 scholarships offers. A 3-year starter at Texas A&M, Mond put up 2,282 yards, 19 touchdowns, and just 3 interceptions in 2020.
Despite the promise coming out of high school, he still has a number of troubling flaws, most notably his middling accuracy and inconsistent anticipation and reading of the field. He did improve pocket presence in 2020, and Jimbo Fisher’s offense employs a lot of pro-style concepts.
One of the more experienced QB’s in this years draft, Mond may appeal to the Bears owing to his three years as a starter. The number one predictor of success for a QB is the years starting in the college game. That said, Mond’s skill-set leaves a lot to be desired at this point. Mond also has the much weaker arm when compared to Trask.
However, with both quarterbacks we see a great deal of benefit to them sitting behind a veteran for a season or two, which makes Chicago a great spot for both.
A word of caution though as the Bears day 2 QB options are quite limited. Both of these QB’s have very similar limitations in their use of the field. If we take a heat map of their throws (per pff.com) and lay them side by side, we see striking similarities.
However, unless Ryan Pace is looking to slap this years 20th overall selection, plus another two first-round picks in future years on the table, an elite arm is out of the question again this year. One further wrinkle to complicate the Bears issues is there are other teams who may look to dip into the QB pool in the second round.
Washington in particular who signed veteran journeyman gunslinger Ryan Fitzpatrick would be a great landing spot for Kyle Trask to sit and learn. Drafting just one spot ahead of the Bears, it may be that a trade needs to be done to move ahead of Washington if they are sold on one of these two guys.
Teams like the Lions, Colts, and maybe even the Steelers could potentially be wild cards to take a punt on their future QB, but that seems unlikely with their current investments in the position.
But one thing is for sure, Ryan Pace has to nail the Bears day 2 QB options down, and have a solid, specific plan. If not Chicago could continue in QB purgatory for the next few years.