Top 5 Candidates for the Chicago Bears' Number 1 Pick in the Draft

Adam LufranoCorrespondent IIIFebruary 5, 2012

TUSCALOOSA, AL - OCTOBER 22:  Courtney Upshaw #41 of the Alabama Crimson Tide against the Tennessee Volunteers at Bryant-Denny Stadium on October 22, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The Chicago Bears have the 19th pick in this April's NFL Draft and Phil Emery is going to want to use that pick for an immediate upgrade at a position of need. The Bears want an upgrade at wide receiver, offensive line, cornerback, and defensive end. There are plenty of options in this year's draft, so Emery will have to choose and scout wisely.

Here are the top five players the Bears could draft in the first round this year.



Michael Floyd, Notre Dame

Floyd is a great talent at wide receiver that the Bears are targeting for this year's draft. He doesn't have elite speed at the position, but every other aspect that the Bears are looking for is there. 

He's big and athletic and he can win a lot of jump balls. He's a good route runner, has great explosion off the line, and he's a physical receiver. Jay Cutler would love for the Bears to draft Floyd in the first round because he's been lacking a go-to receiver ever since he arrived in Chicago. 

If the Bears go out and sign Vincent Jackson, however, they may not draft Floyd because they are very similar players. The Bears would then look to draft a player listed below.



Melvin Ingram, South Carolina


Ingram would be a good pick by the Bears because he would replace Israel Idonije as the DE opposite Julius Peppers. Ingram would benefit from the double teams by Peppers and would be a force on the defensive line for Chicago.

He's good against the run—something the Bears pride themselves on—and he rushes the passer very well. The Bears are going to need all the pass rush they can get, going up against Aaron Rodgers and Matthew Stafford, but they also need to continue to stop the run when they play Adrian Peterson



Janoris Jenkins, Northern Alabama


Alfonzo Dennard would be a good fit in the Bears' Tampa-2, but I like Jenkins more because he has more upside.

The Bears pride themselves on turnovers and Jenkins is a hawk in the defensive backfield. He also plays great man coverage and he would play well opposite Charles Tillman. 

The Bears need a cornerback that can take over the second starting spot next year, and Jenkins would be a really good pick in the draft to do just that.



Peter Konz, Wisconsin


The Bears' most pressing need on the offensive line is left tackle, so the Bears could be looking at Mike Adams from Ohio State in the first round. However, if Peter Konz falls to pick 19, the Bears have to really consider taking the best center in the draft this year.

Roberto Garza played well last season, but he is 33 years old. The Bears will be lining up against Ndamukong Suh and BJ Raji for a long time to come, so finding a franchise center to put against a rising Chris Williams is something the Bears should consider.



Courtney Upshaw, Alabama


The only reason Upshaw is this low is because he probably will go before the Bears' pick at 19. However, if he somehow falls, the Bears could draft quite a steal.

Upshaw would be the DE opposite Julius Peppers that the Bears are looking for. He has proven he can rush the passer from a three-point stance in college, so that won't be a problem in Chicago. He has great speed and power that can overwhelm offensive tackles once he gets to the NFL. Upshaw's ceiling in Chicago would be extremely high.

Idonije had a solid year last year, but the Bears are trying to find an impact DE that can get to quarterback when Peppers is double-teamed. Upshaw would be a great player to come in and do that.