Chicago Bears 2014 Scouting Combine Stock Report
The sun has set on a another year at the scouting combine in Indianapolis. Next up for the potential draft picks are their respective pro days.
Like a Fortune 500 company at the Dow Jones, a player's stock can shift from one moment to the next. We have looked at the workouts and drills from the combine and have given a stock up or down label to a handful of players the Bears might be interested in.
All combine results are from NFL.com.
Stock Up: Pittsburgh Defensive Tackle Aaron Donald
It's no secret the Bears will be looking strongly at a defensive tackle in the first round. This team was dreadful against the run last season and needs to inject some youthful talent into the position.
In the midst of a talented defensive tackle crop, one man has emerged as the best prospect. Pittsburgh's Aaron Donald had an impressive combine and separated himself from other possible first-round selections.
Donald came into the combine riding a hot streak from his impressive performance at the Senior Bowl. While everybody was talking about Jadeveon Clowney's running ability, many looked past Donald's time of 4.68 seconds.
Keep in mind Donald is a robust 285 pounds. He's shorter than your ideal defensive tackle but is very strong. He put up 35 reps in the bench press and proved to everybody, including the Bears, he is worthy of a top-20 pick.
Stock Down: Louisville Free Safety Calvin Pryor
Calvin Pryor had the chance to show everybody he was the clear-cut best safety in the draft, and he just didn't do it.
Pryor had an average 4.58 40 time but put up subpar numbers in the vertical jump (34.5") and broad jump (9'8").
Pryor failed to show teams he is a dynamic athlete. There's no reason the Bears should even consider him in the first round at this point.
To add to his poor athletic display, Pryor measured out at 5'11" after being listed at 6'2'' while at Louisville.
Stock Up: Oklahoma State Cornerback Justin Gilbert
The Bears could be faced with a real conundrum in the first round. While they desperately need a defensive lineman, it will be very tough to pass up the best corner in the draft.
Justin Gilbert is a legit star in the making. His 4.37 40 time cemented his blazing speed, and the young man showed off tremendous leaping ability.
Two qualities from Gilbert that will intrigue the Bears are his height and return skills. He measured out 6'0". He would look very good opposite Tim Jennings.
It's worth noting Bleacher Report's draft expert, Matt Miller, has the Bears taking Gilbert in the first round.
Stock Down: Florida Cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy
The Bears will be looking for an athletic player who can give them meaningful snaps on either offense or defense and return kicks. They will now cross Loucheiz Purifoy off their list.
Purifoy was supposed to be this supreme athlete who could be a solid corner and above-average return man. He even played offense during his time at Florida.
What happened to Purifoy at the combine was a disaster for him. He ran a 4.61 40 time, benched only six reps and looked very nonathletic moving through drills.
Last season wasn't the best for Purifoy at Florida, but he was still very capable of being a first- or second- round pick before the combine. At this point, he has probably slipped into the fourth or fifth round.
Stock Up: Minnesota Safety Brock Vereen
Vereen's brother and father must have prepared him for the combine because he came in focused and ready to show teams he belongs in the NFL. Vereen ran a 4.47 40 and put up 25 reps on the bench press.
He's a smart safety who moves like a corner. He showed fluid hips and ability to catch the football. He came into the combine a mid-to-late-round player who will likely catch the Bears' eye around the third round.
Stock Down: Defensive Tackle Will Sutton
Matt Miller has the Bears drafting Sutton in the second round after drafting Justin Gilbert in the first. Given his sloppy appearance, they might look to pass on the two-time first-team AP All-American.
The problem with Sutton is his desire to be elite. He has the ability and talent but shows too often an unwillingness to work hard and stay in shape.
Sutton showed up to the combine heavier than he should be, and it showed in the drills. He ran a 5.36 40 time and looks more and more like a 3-4 nose tackle.
The Bears would've wanted Sutton to be a 3-technique guy, but he needs to drop some weight and get the quickness back. As of now, they will likely pass on him. He has until his pro day to get back into shape.
Stock Up: Running Back Jerick McKinnon
The former veer quarterback-turned-running back turned some heads at the combine. Jerick McKinnon showed a great combination of speed and strength and ability to adapt to any role.
McKinnon ran a 4.41 40 time and had 32 reps in the bench press. He proved to be a standout athlete after performing well in the broad jump, vertical jump, three-cone drill and 20-yard shuttle run.
There's still an uphill battle for McKinnon to get drafted. He doesn't have a true position, but that could be what intrigues the Bears.
With some development, McKinnon can be a good change-of-pace back, receiver and return man. He is a late-round option right now that might be worth one of those sixth-round picks the Bears have.
Stock Down: Defensive Tackle Timmy Jernigan
Timmy Jernigan came into the combine as a potential favorite to be drafted by the Bears in the first round. He left the combine doing nothing special and not really worthy of a top-15 selection.
Jernigan ran an OK 40 time (5.06) for his size, but when you look at what Aaron Donald did, it just doesn't stand out. He benched 27 reps and just doesn't have a great ability to move from side to side or get off the ball.
There's no doubt Jernigan is still a first-round pick, but he just isn't a player you draft at 14. The Bears would be better off with Donald or Justin Gilbert. If they trade down, then they can justify drafting Jernigan around pick 20.
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