Chicago Bears 2019 NFL Draft Primer: Everything you need to know

Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bears
Chicago Bears (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images) /

18. Mid-round edge rushers

Despite re-signing Aaron Lynch to a one-year deal, the Bears should look to draft an edge rusher due to the fact that next offseason, the team will need to add depth to the position once again. Another reason the Bears should add an edge rusher is that Leonard Floyd is set to be a free agent after the 2019 season. If the Bears and Floyd cannot reach a new contract with Floyd, then they’ll need to find his replacement.

Two potential names to keep an eye on would be Jalen Jelks (Oregon) and Oshane Ximines (Old Dominion). At this point, Jelks will end up being a day three pick, however, Ximines will end up being a day two pick. Both offer qualities that the Bears will value should the team decide to draft them.

A physical run defender who’s totaled 27.5 sacks over the last three seasons, Ximines would be a perfect fit for the Bears 3-4 defense. Ximines weighs 255 pounds, which means he’s set to be an outside linebacker in the Bears scheme. He isn’t overly explosive and did play against smaller competition in college, so he’ll start his career out being a situational piece until he can prove that he’s ready to be a full-time starter.

Jelks, on the other hand, is far from being a finished product. He’d be a guy who’d be more of a special teamer in his first season before regularly seeing the field in his second season. The ideal role for Jelks would be as an outside linebacker. For him to be able to play defensive end, he’d need to bulk up.

Jelks has a high motor and gives his 110 percent effort on each play. When watching him on tape, he takes long strides to try and beat offensive lineman. Despite the fact that some offensive lineman are able to keep up with him, Jelks still tries to disrupt each play. In 2018, Jelks had 7.5 tackles for loss, proving that he can be an effective option in quickly blowing up plays.

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Both Ximines and Jelks are interesting prospects. However, Ximines is clearly the more finished product and has the ability to contribute right away when he gets an opportunity to play in certain situations. The Bears would likely be in a wait-and-see situation with Ximines. There’s a chance he falls to the third-round but if they really covet him, then the Bears could package one of their two 2020 second-round picks and trade up to draft him.