The Chicago Bears’ depth at wide receiver is strong entering the 2020 season. Led by Allen Robinson, Anthony Miller and Ted Ginn, the Bears have, on paper, an effective trio that complements each other well. Javon Wims and Riley Ridley, along with Cordarrelle Patterson, round out a group of five that has significant production upside.
But this can quickly change in one season. Robinson is on an expiring contract, Ginn is on a one-year deal, and while there’s still confidence in Miller becoming the kind of threat Ryan Pace thought he’d be as a second-round pick out of Memphis, that narrative can change quickly if he has another down season.
Ridley and Wims, while promising, are too unproven to suggest a bright future is ahead of them, which is why this new 2021 NFL Mock Draft is sending the Bears a potential superstar at the position in Alabama’s Jaylen Waddle.
Waddle would provide the Bears with something they haven’t had at wide receiver in a very long time. He’s a field-flipper who would bring that Tyreek Hill element to Matt Nagy’s offense in Chicago. Check him out:
Waddle will challenge LSU’s Ja’Marr Chase for the WR1 ranking in next year’s draft, which is pretty remarkable considering he was, at best, the third option in Alabama’s passing game in 2019 behind Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs III.
Waddle ended the 2019 season with 33 catches for 560 yards and six touchdowns. He’s averaged 18.1 yards per catch over his first two seasons with the Crimson Tide (he had 848 yards and seven touchdowns as a freshman).
It’s really (really!) early to say with any certainty what the pecking order of next year’s draft class will be, but a talent like Waddle isn’t hard to figure out. He’s going to be a high first-round pick, and if the Bears are picking in this range next April, he’ll absolutely be on their radar.
Bears add playmaking wide receiver in latest 2021 NFL mock draft originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago