Bears should focus on WR, CB, LB at combine

Ridley ready for NFL stardom (0:53)

Former Alabama star Calvin Ridley is projected as the top WR in the 2018 draft after making a series of highlight-reel plays for the Crimson Tide. (0:53)

A closer look at the positions the Chicago Bears could target at the NFL combine in Indianapolis:

Positions of need: The Bears' top offensive need is at wide receiver, as the team had only one receiver crack the 50-catch mark in 2017 -- Kendall Wright (59), who is an unrestricted free agent. The Bears are still holding out hope that former first-round pick Kevin White will pan out, but White has played in only five regular-season games since the Bears drafted him No. 7 overall in 2015. The Bears' leading wide receiver two seasons ago, Cameron Meredith, is coming back from a devastating knee injury suffered this past preseason.

The Bears also have issues at cornerback, where both of last year's starters -- Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara -- are unrestricted free agents.

In addition, Chicago's decision to decline veteran Josh Sitton's team option opens up a hole at left guard that needs to be filled. Furthermore, the Bears need to strengthen their outside linebacker position -- veteran Pernell McPhee was released on Monday -- and find a reliable backup for second-year quarterback Mitchell Trubisky.

Finally, the expected loss of respected veteran Zach Miller (unrestricted free agent) also leaves the Bears a body short at tight end, where 2017 second-round pick Adam Shaheen is likely to play a much larger role in 2018.

Four players the Bears could focus on at the combine:

Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Virginia Tech: Edmunds (6-foot-5, 250 pounds) seems best suited at outside linebacker in a 3-4 defensive scheme. He played sparingly for the Hokies as a freshman but came on strong the past two seasons with a combined 215 tackles, 32.5 tackles for loss and 10 sacks. Edmunds is supposed to be an athletic freak who'll no doubt turn heads at the combine.

Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State: Ward was a consensus first-team All-American last season after he broke up 15 passes and made two interceptions. After sitting out the Cotton Bowl to avoid injury, Ward is vying to become the fourth Buckeyes cornerback selected in the first round in the past three years.

Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama: Ridley (6-1, 190) had 55 receptions for 896 yards and three touchdowns in the 2017 regular season and added two more touchdowns in Alabama's playoff victories over Clemson and Georgia. Ridley put up even better numbers the previous two seasons, with a career-high 89 catches for 1,045 yards and seven TDs in 2015 and 72 receptions for 769 yards and seven touchdowns in 2016.

Quenton Nelson, G, Notre Dame: Nelson is the favorite to be the first offensive lineman drafted in April. ESPN NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. compares Nelson to former 12-year NFL guard Steve Hutchinson. Nelson’s former offensive line coach at Notre Dame, Harry Hiestand, was hired by the Bears last month.