The team of scouts here at The Draft Network published the end-of-year TDN100
, ranking the top 100 prospects for the 2022 NFL Draft as the 2021 college football season comes to an official close. It’s an invaluable resource for fans to get familiar with this year’s premier players, including Chicago Bears fans who’ll have to dig a little deeper in their draft studies because of Chicago’s lack of a first-round pick.
Let’s dive into the TDN100 and focus on four players who should be available for the Bears’ first selection, which is likely to be somewhere around the 45th overall pick.
No. 43: David Bell, WR, Purdue
Bell earned a second-round grade from TDN scout Kyle Crabbs, which if you know Crabbs’ track record of talent evaluation, is a good sign for Bell’s future. The 6-foot-2, 205-pound playmaker from Purdue recorded 93 catches for 1,286 yards and six touchdowns in 2021, bringing his career touchdown total to 21 with the Boilermakers. He averaged 12.7 yards per catch on 232 career receptions, proving he’s a downfield playmaker who’d bring the Bears some size and big-play ability on offense.
No. 47: George Pickens, WR, Georgia
Pickens may end the 2022 draft process with a ranking much higher than this considering he’s only rated this low because of his history of injury. TDN’s Drae Harris issued Pickens a third-round grade, which is pretty remarkable considering he tore his ACL during spring practice. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound jump-ball wideout has an alpha mentality and is very good as a contested-catch specialist. He projects as a starter in the NFL, making him a bargain pick anywhere on Day 2.
No. 51: Daniel Faalele, OT, Minnesota
Faalele doesn’t profile as a ‘need’ for the Bears at this point following Chicago’s selections of Teven Jenkins and Larry Borom in the 2021 draft, but you can never have enough talent at offensive tackle. If Faalele is available when the Bears are on the clock, they’ll have to at least consider him as an option. At 6-foot-8 and 380 pounds, he’d be a ton of fun to watch in a Bears uniform. A likely right tackle in the league, Faalele would allow Chicago to kick Borom inside to guard and give the Bears a massive front-five.
No. 55: Jamaree Salyer, iOL, Georgia
If the Bears want to go with an interior offensive lineman with their first selection, Salyer would make a good amount of sense. The former 5-star recruit and starting left tackle for the Bulldogs has more of a guard’s frame for the NFL. He’s a pretty good athlete and possesses more than enough strength to hang in the trenches and would immediately project as an upgrade for Chicago’s interior. Adding Salyer to the roster would give the Bears flexibility with James Daniels and Cody Whitehair, allowing one of them to move back to center.