With their top four cornerbacks (Charles Tillman, Tim Jennings, Kelvin Hayden and Zack Bowman) signed only through 2013, the feeling is the Chicago Bears will look to select a cornerback during NFL Draft weekend.
The question is when.
The top of the draft is littered with talented cornerbacks who could fit the Bears' needs, including Florida State's Xavier Rhodes, Washington's Desmond Trufant, Mississippi State's Darius Slay and Johnthan Banks and Boise State's Jamar Taylor, a former teammate of the Bears 2012 first round draft choice Shea McClellin.
Considering the Bears spent so much time scouting McClellin at Boise State last year, the club should have a thorough scouting report on Taylor, same with Oregon State cornerback Jordan Poyer, a third-round prospect who played with second-year Bears safety Brandon Hardin in college.
As far as cornerbacks the Bears are known to have showed interest in -- the team hosted Southeast Louisiana's Robert Alford on an official pre-draft visit. The word on Alford, projected to come off the board in the third round, is that from an athleticism standpoint, he's a first-round talent, but other aspects of his game have pushed him down to the mid-rounds.
The Bears also put Miami's Brandon McGee trhough a private workout, and kicked the tires on 6-3 New Mexico State cornerback Jeremy Harris, a potential late-round/priority free agent.
Next ten: Jordan Poyer, Oregon State, 6-0, 190; Blidi Wreh-Wilson, Connecticut, 6-1, 195; Tyrann Mathieu, LSU, 5-9, 186; Leon McFadden, San Diego State, 5-10, 193; Logan Ryan, Rutgers, 5-11, 191; Tharold Simon, LSU, 6-2, 202; B.W. Webb, Williams & Mary, 5-10, 184; Sanders Commings, Georgia, 6-0, 216; Brandon McGee, 5-11, 193; Will Davis, Utah State, 5-11, 186.
Analysis: Just like at linebacker, the Bears would be wise to select a cornerback for a variety of reasons. First off, this appears to be an above average cornerback class, and even if the Bears wait until the second or third day to address the position, they should be in position to get a pretty decent player. There is also the issue of all their top cornerbacks currently on the roster playing on essentially one-year deals. It seems logical the Bears would look to extend either Tillman or Jennings, but will they do both? Can they do both? The Bears need some youth at cornerback beyond 2012 sixth-round pick Isaiah Frey, currently the No. 2 nickel back, so it would make sense that one of their five picks (barring a trade) would go towards upgrading the secondary.