Now that the Bears have locked up the first-overall pick, the conversation will be about if they’ll consider a quarterback. They shouldn’t, and former Vikings general manager Rick Spielman, who is also our partner on the “With the First Pick” podcast, addressed why they should seriously consider trading down instead.
We took our own advice in this mock draft and had the Bears trading down to No. 4, allowing the Colts to move up for … quarterback Will Levis. That will be controversial, no doubt, and we get why. Levis had a forgettable 2022 campaign at Kentucky, but NFL teams really like him, and as the old saying goes, it only takes one. And if Colts owner Jim Irsay is convinced that Levis is the next in line after Manning and Luck, then guess what’s going to happen?
In case you’re wondering, here’s the compensation we came up with (remember: this is neither hard nor fast, and it may cost considerably more to move up just a few spots because trade-value charts go out the window when it comes to trading up for a quarterback): the Colts gets No. 1; the Bears gets, Nos. 4, 36, 80, and a 2024 second-rounder.
Chicago moves down three spots … and still comes away with Jalen Carter, whom we had them taking first overall in our last mock draft. And in the process, they stockpile picks, which allows them to plug as many holes as possible in an effort to protect Justin Fields.
Meanwhile, the Texans take a quarterback at No. 2, while the Raiders move up two spots, from No. 7 to No. 5 to get their quarterback of the future. The cost? Las Vegas gets No. 5, while Seattle gets No. 7 and No. 71 to drop two spots. If you’re wondering why the Raiders might consider moving up, it’ll be because of concerns about the Panthers sitting in the No. 9 spot, and whether owner David Tepper will aggressively try to move up for one of the top passers.
Of course, David Carr is going to be starting somewhere other than Vegas next season, and that could obviously impact what teams decide to do in the draft — including the Panthers and possibly the Jets, and to a lesser extent, the Commanders, who now appear open to giving Sam Howell a shot at the job.
As always, thanks to all of you for the comments, thumbs up, and kind words regarding our new endeavor, the “With the First Pick” podcast. Appreciate all the feedback and remember: we’ll be live every Monday at 2 p.m. ET on the Pick Pix YouTube channel, and you can subscribe on iTunes, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts.
As we get closer to the draft, we’ll expand to several shows a week with CBS Sports NFL Draft analysts Josh Edwards, Chris Trapasso and Emory Hunt, as well as other folks in the CBS Sports family. You can follow me on Twitter at @ryanwilsonCBS for updates and reminders.
Remember: there are only 31 selections in this mock draft because the Dolphins were stripped of their first-round pick due to tampering.