Deshaun Watson Says the Bears 'Never Once' Talked to Him Before 2017 NFL DraftMay 9, 2020
The 2017 NFL draft keeps finding new ways to haunt fans of the Chicago Bears.
That was the year the team traded a handful of picks to the San Francisco 49ers for the right to draft second overall. After the Cleveland Browns took Myles Garrett with the No. 1 pick, the Bears were able to grab the first quarterback off the board.
Chicago went with Mitch Trubisky, passing on the likes of Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson. The latter two were drafted No. 10 and No. 12, respectively.
In a tweet Friday, Watson revealed the Bears never even attempted to talk to him leading up to the draft:
It's not abnormal for a club to draft highly-touted players without talking to them at length beforehand. The Dallas Cowboys just did that with wideout CeeDee Lamb this year. The difference is the Bears knew a quarterback was their biggest need, and Watson was already a two-time Heisman Trophy finalist and 2016 national champion.
To not even speak to him would seem like malpractice for Chicago general manager Ryan Pace.
In the three seasons since the 2017 draft, Watson has earned two Pro Bowl nods, while Mahomes has already won an MVP award and a Super Bowl title.
The Bears recently declined the fifth-year option on Trubisky's rookie contract.
Update: 5/8/20 (11:18 p.m. EST)
It appears Watson did at least have some communication with the Bears before the draft.
Late Friday evening the Rich Eisen show tweeted a clip from before the draft where Watson claims he spoke to the Bears by phone:
The new info may only slightly help Pace's case as his draft prep in 2017 remains suspicious at best.