Starting off with a bit of a bang.
This is probably a shocker and might seem a tad unrealistic given the needs the Bears have in this draft. However, it’s not that outlandish.
To go on the record, I have always had carried a bias against Notre Dame players. Maybe it’s that their team is overrated in the rankings year after year, maybe it’s that I’m not a huge Brian Kelly fan. Either way, there was no chance I was letting Miles Boykin slip past the Bears at 87.
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To begin with, if you try evaluating Boykin solely off of his statistical output at South Bend, you’re missing badly on him. He popped last season, but most of that had happened once Kelly decided to make a quarterback change. That said, on the surface, he passes the eye test. His Combine was nearly cartoonish when you see his numbers and for some reason, he never got the same buzz that D.K. Metcalf did.
On the tape, Boykin offers a ton size and athleticism that screams potential at the next level. To me, there is a possibility he could be a real problem as a boundary or possession receiver in a couple of years. Similarly to Metcalf, there are concerns about whether or not he can beat press coverage. That does tend to be a concern with bigger receivers out of the gate. His route tree could also use some polish.
In a deep, but not top-heavy, wide receiver draft, Boykin happens to take something of a draft-day tumble. I think he’s a second-round talent that by process of elimination, gets squeezed out. It seems crazy to think the Bears would take a receiver here when it’s far from the top of their needs, but the value they would get with the Tinley Park stud late in round three is incredible.
Not to mention, the guaranteed money on Allen Robinson’s and Taylor Gabriel’s contracts mostly run out after the 2019 season. They’re still under control in the years 2020 and 2021, respectively, but building a roster should always center around the draft. And in this case, Boykin and Anthony Miller should be considered Mitchell Trubisky’s go-to targets for the future.
(My best friends at PFF coincidentally have the Bears scooping him up at 87, for what it’s worth.)