The latest NFL Draft rumors largely center around the No. 1 overall pick with the Chicago Bears fielding offers from several teams interested in picking a quarterback. While it’s a virtual certainty that Chicago moves down, there is a new report about just how far they are willing to go in the 2023 NFL Draft order.
Chicago secured the first pick in Week 18 after the Houston Texans beat the Indianapolis Colts 32-31 in the closing seconds of the game. As a result, the Bears could become just the fifth team in history to trade the No. 1 pick.
Related: Chicago Bears GM believes he can add two future firsts in trade down
Ryan Poles, Chicago’s general manager, talked up the first overall selection heavily during the NFL Combine. The Bears are already involved in trade negotiations with multiple teams and there is a belief the pick could be moved in March.
Coming out of the scouting combine, the Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Carolina Panthers and Las Vegas Raiders have all emerged as candidates to acquire the top pick. With so many suitors and a field of quarterbacks headlined by Bryce Young, Anthony Richardson and C.J. Stroud, Chicago’s range of trade-down spots is relatively wide.
NFL insider Charles Robinson addressed the Bears’ draft plans on Yahoo Sports’ You Pod to Win the Game podcast. During the discussion, he shared his belief of how far Chicago is willing to move down the board based on conversations with team officials before the combine.
Related: NFL insider believes Chicago Bears could net six picks in trade down
“I think Chicago’s comfort zone was to seven, I truly believe that. I think they are comfortable. I think they would even be comfortable, say, moving back a few spots maybe to the Colts, and then moving back again to, say, the Raiders at seven.”Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson on Chicago Bears’ comfort zone for trading down
Robinson noted that the conversation with a team official happened before arriving in Indianapolis, hours before news broke of Jalen Carter’s arrest. However, the current belief from NFL teams is the misdemeanors will have little impact on Carter’s draft stock.
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The motivation for Chicago would be simple. It could move down to the fourth overall pick, allowing the Colts to draft Young, in exchange for a 2024 first-round pick and other assets. Once on the clock at four, the Bears could swing a deal with the quarterback-needy Raiders for the seventh pick and more draft capital.
Related: Chicago Bears draft picks 2023
It would be an ideal outcome for a franchise that is still in the early stages of rebuilding and needs to surround Justin Fields with as much talent as possible. If the Bears trade down twice, they could pick edge rusher Tyree Wilson or one of the top cornerback prospects. After that, they will likely have at least five picks on Day 2 that would either allow them to move up into Round 1 or they can just grab talent on both sides of the ball with multiple second- and third-round selections.
It would be an ideal outcome for a franchise that is expected to spend on the top NFL free agents because they have more than $100 million in cap space, nearly double the next closest teams.