By Adam Hoge-
(CBS) — A look at the top 20 NFL Draft prospects that could be on the Bears’ radar, based on projected availability, position of need and player skill:
TE Eric Ebron, North Carolina
Arm: 33 1/4
College Career: Was a full-time starter for the final two years of his three year stint at North Carolina. Decided to forgo his senior year to enter the draft. Broke Vernon Davis’ ACC record for single-season receiving yards (973) as a junior.
Strengths: Has wide receiver speed and skills in a tight end body. Crisp route runner who will be a mismatch against linebackers, safeties and cornerbacks. Great hands with big range as a receiver. Picks up yards after the catch too. Can line up anywhere on the offense. Good enough blocker. Just turned 21.
Weaknesses: Could get a little stronger as long as it doesn’t affect his speed. Blocking technique could be refined. Concentration is lacking at times. Pulled up with a hamstring injury at the Combine and dropped passes at his pro day.
Bears Outlook: Ebron might have the most convincing game film in the entire draft. He was seemingly always open at North Carolina and piled up big yards after the catch. Miss the initial tackle and he has the speed to take it all the way. NFL teams will want improve Ebron’s blocking, but it’s not bad by any means. Plus, it’s his receiving skills and ability to create mismatches that coaches and GMs will drool over — especially in today’s NFL. Bears GM Phil Emery said at the Combine that “there’s going to be a lot of offensive playmakers on the board” at No. 14, and Ebron is undoubtedly one of those guys. But would Emery bypass all the defensive needs and take the tight end there? Hey, he’s surprised us before.
Adam Hoge covers the Bears for CBSChicago.com and is a frequent contributor to 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter at @AdamHoge.