What Are The Chicago Bears’ Team Needs In The 2022 NFL Draft?

The 2022 NFL Draft starts on Thursday, April 28. As a lead-up to the draft, we’ll be giving a team-by-team breakdown for positional needs. For each team, we’ll give an overview of the current depth chart and how big of a need each position is in the upcoming draft. You can find the rest of the team needs (as they’re updated) and the rest of our draft content in the 2022 NFL Draft hub.

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What Picks do the Chicago Bears have in 2022

The Chicago Bears have six picks.

Round 2 (39)
Round 2 (48)
Round 3 (71)
Round 5 (148)
Round 5 (150)
Round 6 (186)




Chicago Bears Strength of Schedule, 2022

The Chicago Bears have the second easiest NFL strength of schedule for the 2022 NFL season.

Chicago Bears Offense

By Rich Hribar


Justin Fields
Nick Foles
Trevor Siemian
Ryan Willis

The Bears do not have a first-round pick this season due to trading up for Justin Fields a year ago. 

Fields had a brutal start when he finally got to take over the starter in Chicago. His first five starts were as bad as you could draw up, completing 57.8% of his passes for 6.4 Y/A with two touchdown passes and five interceptions.

It looked as if Fields was dead in the water, then he climbed up to competency over his final five starts completing 60.4% of his passes for 7.6 Y/A with five touchdowns. 

While that still leaves a ton to be desired as a passer, Fields getting more comfortable also led to more rushing and as a byproduct. He rushed for 56 yards per game over that stretch. 

Fields also pushed the football. His 7.1 air yards per completion were tops in the league when he did complete passes. Chicago still has questionable talent for Fields to work with, but they will not take another quarterback here. 

Behind Fields, Nick Foles carries a $10.7 million cap hit ($7.7 million dead cap) on the final year of his contract while the team also brought in journeyman Trevor Siemian as veteran insurance. 


David Montgomery
Khalil Herbert
Darrynton Evans
Khari Blasingame (FB)

The most respectable element of the Chicago offense in 2021 was that they closed the year 12th in expected points added via their rushing offense (18.6 points) while ranking 14th in rushing yardage (2,018 yards). 

Fields was a contributor to those counting stats, but David Montgomery has given the organization three consecutive seasons with over 1,000 yards from scrimmage with at least seven touchdowns in each. 

Montgomery missed four games last season but was a workhorse when available. He was second among all backs in snap share per game (74.6%) while handling 81.2% of the backfield touches in his games played. A new coaching staff may create more balance with Khalil Herbert while Montgomery is also entering the final season of his rookie contract.

Herbert is capable insurance if things were to go south in a potential contract extension for Montgomery. Herbert showed that he was capable of handling a heavy workload as a rookie, handling 76.9% of the backfield touches Weeks 5-8 with Montgomery banged up. Herbert turned in 97 yards from scrimmage per game over that four-game stretch.  

With Darrynton Evans here as back-end depth, the Bears should not use any of their limited draft capital on a running back in April.


Darnell Mooney
Byron Pringle
Equanimeous St. Brown
Nsimba Webster
Isaiah Coulter
Dazz Newsome

This is one of the worst receiving groups currently in the NFL. After Darnell Mooney, it is borderline malpractice to field a receiving unit as talent starved as this one when attempting to groom a young quarterback who already had struggles as a rookie.

Mooney is the only wide receiver here signed beyond this season. 

One of the few bright spots in 2021, after a 61-631-4 season as a rookie on 98 targets, Mooney caught 81-of-140 targets for 1,055 yards and four touchdowns this past season.

Mooney has limitations in becoming a full-fledged alpha (he was dead last in contested catch rate among qualifying receivers in 2021), but he is looking at being the de facto WR1 for at least another season. In the five games that Allen Robinson missed last season, Mooney caught five passes in all of those games while receiving 25.9% of the team targets. 

The Bears do not have a first-round pick but expect them to use at least one (if not both) second-round picks on a wide receiver that should immediately push to be counted on to play a lot of snaps out of the gates.


Cole Kmet
Ryan Griffin
James O’Shaughnessy
Jesper Horsted

The cupboard is largely bare here as well as the Bears currently only have two tight ends on the roster.

Cole Kmet took steps forward across the board in his second season at age 22, catching 60-of-93 targets for 612 yards. 

While the overall production was not scintillating and he failed to score a touchdown, being so young and jumping to a full-time player should still be considered a positive for a tight end that was selected in the second round the year prior. Now, the ghost of Jimmy Graham (who matched Kmet with six end zone targets) will be gone. 

The Bears have no choice but to lean on Kmet, adding veterans Ryan Griffin and James O’Shaughnessy as insurance and depth.


LT: Teven Jenkins/Lachavious Simmons
LG: Cody Whitehair/Dieter Eiselen
C: Lucas Patrick/Sam Mustipher
RG: Dakota Dozier/Willie Wright
RT: Larry Borom/Tyrone Wheatley

If you thought the Bears have had offensive problems over the previous two groups of support for a young passer, things continue to get worse.

No team took more sacks in 2021 than the Bears (58) or had more possessions with a sack (53). Chicago passers were sacked on a league-high 9.7% of their dropbacks. Fields carried an 11.8% sack rate while Andy Dalton was at 10.3% and Nick Foles 7.1% as the Bears allowed a 36.9% pressure rate, which was 24th in the league.

Two of their current projected starters were selected a year ago in Teven Jenkins and Larry Borom. Jenkins (taken 39th overall in 2021) was only able to appear in six games (two starts) due to injury, playing just 161 snaps all season. His limited sample was a struggle, allowing a 9.9% pressure rate on 111 pass blocking snaps. 

Borom was a fifth-rounder a year ago who allowed an 8.2% pressure rate and five sacks on 389 pass blocking snaps. While currently listed at right tackle, Borom is definitely written in with pencil. 

Veteran Cody Whitehair is still signed through 2024 while Lucas Patrick was brought in from Green Bay after starting 28 games the past two seasons with the Packers.

Journeyman Dakota Dozier is also written in with pencil at right guard. The 31-year-old was brought in from Minnesota, starting more than four games in just one of his seven NFL seasons. 

The Bears have severe needs still on the right side of their line.

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Chicago Bears Defense

By Dan Pizzuta

Interior Defensive Line

Justin Jones
Angelo Blackson
Khyiris Tonga
Mario Edwards Jr.
LaCale London
Auzoyah Alufohai

The Bears have lost a few mainstays on the defensive line. Eddie Goldman and Akiem Hicks are both still free agents. Bilal Nichols signed with the Las Vas Raiders. Chicago intended to sign Larry Ogunjobi to a hefty deal in free agency, but that fell through after a failed physical.

Justin Jones was Chicago’s next move as the Bears brought the veteran lineman on a two-year deal. Jones had a career-high three sacks and five quarterback hits in 2021 but his biggest impact will come against the run.

Last season, Angelo Blackson came in as a veteran free agent and played 55% of the defensive snaps. Blackson had nine quarterback hits last season but doesn’t bring a high pressure rate at the position. 

This group is mostly made of big run-stuffing linemen. That includes 338-pound 2021 seventh-round pick Khyiris Tonga, who played 20% of the defensive snaps.


Trevis Gipson
Robert Quinn
Jeremiah Attaochu
Al-Quadin Muhammed
Sam Kamara
Charles Snowden

Robert Quinn ranked second among edge rushers in Pass Rush Win Rate last season. He’s typically been the type of player who fairs well by that metric with early wins. He ranked 24th overall in pressure rate among edge rushers, per SIS, which is still great for the 31-year-old. He signed a massive five-year deal with the Bears in 2020, but there is no guaranteed salary remaining starting in 2022.

With Khalil Mack in and out of the lineup last season, 2020 fifth-round pick Trevis Gipson got more run as a starter. He ranked 44th among edge rushers in pressure rate and was an effective run defender with seven tackles for loss. Most impressive was his five forced fumbles.

The depth here is fairly thin behind the two projected starters and it’s a clear spot that could be improved on a team that ranked 25th in pressure rate last season.

Off-ball Linebacker

Roquan Smith
Nicholas Morrow
Caleb Johnson
Joe Thomas
Noah Dawkins
Ledarius Mack

Roquan Smith has been a constant on the second level of the Chicago defense. He played 95% of the snaps in 2021 and made plays all over. Smith was 24th among 85 qualified linebackers in yards allowed per coverage snap and added 12 tackles for loss. Smith is playing 2022 on his fifth-year option.

The rest of the linebacker room is pretty much a blank slate, though that may be a good thing. Alec Ogletree played surprisingly well in his one season in Chicago, but he’s a free agent and it’s smart to not double down on what to this point looks like an outlier season. The Bears also moved on from Danny Trevethan.

Nicholas Morrow comes over from the Raiders. He missed all of 2021 with an ankle injury, but has been a good coverage linebacker when he’s on the field.


Jaylon Johnson
Kindle Vildor
Thomas Graham Jr.
Duke Shelley
Lamar Jackson
Michael Joseph
BoPete Keyes

Jaylon Johnson has been impressive stepping up as a second-round pick in 2020 — though he might have been slightly overextended as the top corner last season. He ranked 73rd among 93 qualified cornerbacks in Adjusted Yards allowed per coverage snap last season.

Kindle Vildor was around the same spot, 77th among those corners. Vildor is a 2020 fifth-round pick who played 78% of the defensive snaps in 2021.

The most impressive defensive back last season might have been Thomas Graham Jr., who was a rookie sixth-round pick and only got into four games. He saw only seven targets, but on those plays he allowed only two completions and had four passes defensed. He’ll get more playing time in 2022.


Eddie Jackson
DeAndre Houston-Carson
Dane Cruikshank

Eddie Jackson wasn’t as impactful as he’s been in previous seasons with so much of the responsibility put on him in the secondary. The problem is not much has changed and the current depth chart is even more barren around him.

The Bears brought in Dane Cruikshank from the Titans, who got his first extended run on defensse (46% of snaps) in his fourth season after playing no more than 2% of the defensive snaps over his first three.

There’s always a chance Chicago goes back to Tashaun Gipson, who has been a late-in-the-process signing in each of the past two seasons.

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