As the 2022 season drifts towards its end, the Bears find themselves in a position where losing would be more beneficial than winning. As the Bears head into week 18 against the Minnesota Vikings, they occupy the number two overall pick in the 2023 NFL draft. With enough luck, the Bears can turn that pick into the number one overall pick in the draft. For that to happen, the Bears would need to lose in their upcoming matchup against the Vikings. Also, the Bears would have to rely on the Houston Texans, who currently occupy the number one overall pick, to win against the Indianapolis Colts. With the Bears sitting most of their starters, they don’t have to worry as much about their matchup, but they should worry about the Texans’.
In a display of geniusness, Head Coach Matt Eberflus plans to shut down Justin Fields, who is said to have been dealing with a hip injury. Along with Fields, Teven Jenkins, Michael Schofield, and Josh Blackwell were among the players put on IR, effectively ending their seasons. The Bears are heading into their last game with a roster that could qualify as a practice squad, so winning doesn’t seem to be in the question for the Bears. If the Bears win somehow, they can draft as low as fourth overall, which doesn’t appear that much lower, but it makes all the difference if the Bears end up trading back in the draft.
Let’s talk hypotheticals. If the Bears end up securing the first overall pick, it would be foolish not to trade down. For those that don’t pay attention to college football, here’s a brief rundown on why the Bears would trade down. As the college season has just ended, Ohio State’s C.J. Stroud and Alabama’s Bryce Young are two top quarterback prospects on almost every team’s draft board. Since the Bears already have their franchise quarterback in Justin Fields, they can receive a haul of draft picks from a team lower in the draft that needs a quarterback. Such teams include the Falcons, Panthers, Lions, Giants, Commanders, or Seahawks. The Bears can receive many picks for the number one overall selection and players who can make an immediate impact on the field for the Bears.