Chicago Bears' 2014 NFL Draft Plans Better Include a QB

By Mike Cuddy
Jordan Lynch
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

On Wednesday morning former Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch revealed to that he has a workout with the Chicago Bears scheduled for Apr. 18. Now this does not necessarily mean the Bears plan to draft Lynch, though it does show that they have started to evaluate the quarterbacks that will be available towards the tail end of this upcoming draft.

The Bears have not drafted a quarterback since they took Nathan Enderle in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL Draft. Since then Enderle has moved on to play in the Arena Football League. So why should the Bears use a pick on a quarterback when they just signed Jay Cutler to a seven-year deal and have never shown an ability to develop a young quarterback in the past?

Simple answer: They have never had Marc Trestman before.

The man who has been nicknamed the quarterback whisperer was significantly responsible for the career turnaround of Rich Gannon in Oakland and most recently of former Bears backup Josh McCown. It stands to reason that if the team was to select Lynch, or former Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray in the latter rounds of this draft, Trestman could possibly help develop him into a quality quarterback in the NFL. With Cutler’s history of injuries, having a quality backup around is necessary for the Bears; and by bringing in a guy via the draft, the team could keep the cost relatively cheap.

So if the Bears have more than a few holes to fill on the defensive side of the ball in the early rounds of this draft, how can they still grab a quality quarterback in the later rounds? According to multiple scouts and front office personnel, including Bears general manager Phil Emery, this is possibly one of the deepest drafts ever. According to ESPN insider Todd McShay’s latest mock draft there could still be a few potential stars hanging around after the fourth or fifth round of this draft. This includes guys like Murray or Zach Mettenberger out of LSU, and Lynch, who finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting last season.

Now Murray and Mettenberger are both coming off torn ACLs suffered last season, and Lynch struggled with accuracy issues while throwing at the NFL combine in early March. Given their setbacks, the dark horse that could emerge and be a draft day surprise is Keith Wenning out of Ball State. At 6-foot-3 and 218-pounds, Wenning has the size and skill-set to be successful in Trestman’s offense.

Whichever way the team decides to go in this draft, it is certainly a nice change of pace to see them thinking proactively about filling possible weak spots before they cause issues.

Mike Cuddy is a Chicago Bears writer for Follow him on Twitter @MikeCuddy, “Like” him on Facebook, or add him to your network on Google.

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