Bears' Top Hypothetical Trades to Make Splash in 2022 NFL Draft

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IIApril 4, 2022

Bears' Top Hypothetical Trades to Make Splash in 2022 NFL Draft

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    Michael Conroy/Associated Press

    Heading into the 2022 NFL draft, the Chicago Bears don't have any first-round picks. Instead, they aren't scheduled to be on the clock until the second round at the No. 39 overall selection, the first of the team's six picks.

    That doesn't mean Chicago won't end up selecting a player in the first round or that it may not end up with more selections than it has. There's always the potential for trades throughout the draft, so the Bears could be moving up or down multiple times between April 28-30.

    Chicago has already added one 2022 draft pick since the offseason began, as it dealt edge-rusher Khalil Mack to the Los Angeles Chargers in exchange for a second-round selection. Could more trades soon be coming for the Bears in their first offseason with Ryan Poles at general manager?

    Here's a look at several deals Chicago could explore during the draft to help improve its roster.

Trade into 1st Round to Land WR

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    Darron Cummings/Associated Press

    Eagles Receive: No. 48 overall pick, 2023 first-round pick

    Bears Receive: No. 19 overall pick

    Chicago needs another standout wide receiver to play alongside Darnell Mooney to give quarterback Justin Fields a strong target to throw to during his second NFL season. And if the Bears want to make a splash, perhaps they would consider moving up into the first round to add an offensive playmaker.

    Philadelphia owns three first-round selections, so maybe it would be interested in turning one of those picks into a selection a bit later in the draft and a first-rounder for next year. Depending on how things unfold, Chicago could then come away with one of the top wide receivers in the class by moving up to No. 19.

    Among the receivers who may be available in this range are Arkansas' Treylon Burks, Alabama's Jameson Williams and Penn State's Jahan Dotson. But maybe somebody like Ohio State's Chris Olave could fall this far, which would be intriguing for the Bears, who could pair Fields with a former Buckeyes teammate.

    It may be unlikely that Chicago would sacrifice a 2023 first-round pick to move into the opening round this year considering it has so many roster holes to fill and could be looking to add draft capital instead. But if the Bears have an opportunity to bring in a top-tier receiver by finding a potential trade partner, it should be something they at least consider.

Trade Back Further for More Picks

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    Nam Y. Huh/Associated Press

    Saints Receive: No. 39 overall pick, 2023 sixth-round pick

    Bears Receive: No. 49 overall pick, No. 120 overall pick, No. 237 overall pick

    This is the exact type of move that Chicago is most likely to make early on the second day of the draft. The Bears have only six picks, and after the No. 71 overall selection, they are not scheduled to be on the clock again until the fifth round at No. 148.

    There are numerous teams picking not too far behind Chicago at No. 39 that could be looking to move up. If the New Orleans Saints can't land a quarterback in the first round, it may want to pursue one in the second. And by moving up 10 spots, the Saints may leap ahead of some other teams also in the market for a signal-caller at that point.

    By packaging the No. 39 pick with a late selection in the 2023 draft, the Bears could get three 2022 picks in return. They will then have an opportunity to strengthen their rookie class by adding to more areas of their roster.

    Don't be surprised if Chicago not only trades down from No. 39, but then also moves down from several of its other picks so that it can turn one selection into multiple picks more than once.

Trade Away Nick Foles

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    Bruce Kluckhohn/Associated Press

    Jaguars Receive: QB Nick Foles

    Bears Receive: No. 188 overall pick

    It may not be a huge trade, but Chicago doesn't have a need for Foles in 2022. Fields will be the Bears' starting QB, and they have Trevor Siemian to serve as a backup. Poles said at the recent NFL owners meetings that the team was "working" on a trade involving Foles, per ESPN's Courtney Cronin.

    The Jacksonville Jaguars make sense as a potential trade partner. Foles could join the Jags to be their backup and serve as a mentor to Trevor Lawrence. Plus, Jacksonville has four sixth-round picks in this year's draft, so it could be willing to lose one of those to get a reliable quarterback for the No. 2 spot on its depth chart.

    The 33-year-old isn't likely to land a large return considering he will likely be joining a team to be its backup. But the Bears need as many draft picks as possible, so parting with a player they are unlikely to use in exchange for a pick makes sense.