Bears get Florida DT Dexter, Miami CB Stevenson in NFL Draft

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - APRIL 27: A Chicago Bears fan poses prior to the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft at Union Station on April 27, 2023 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images)

The Chicago Bears addressed their shaky defense in the second round of the NFL draft, taking Florida tackle Gervon Dexter with the No. 53 pick and Miami cornerback Tyrique Stevenson three spots later after trading up with Jacksonville on Friday night.

They added South Carolina defensive tackle Zacch Pickens with the first selection of the third round.

The Bears got help on defense one night after going with Tennessee offensive tackle Darnell Wright with the No. 10 overall pick and giving quarterback Justin Fields more protection.

They addressed a glaring need and added size on the defensive line by taking the 6-foot-6, 310-pound Dexter. He started all 13 games in his third season with Florida last year and had 55 tackles and two sacks.

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Chicago moved up five spots to get Stevenson. The Bears also sent the No. 136 pick to Jacksonville.

Stevenson played two seasons at Georgia and in 2019 he broke up five passes. He was honorable mention All-ACC in 2021 after transferring to Miami and led the Hurricanes with seven pass breakups last season.

Pickens, the 64th pick, had 42 tackles and broke up three passes in 12 starts for South Carolina last season.

The Bears finished with the worst record in the league and set a franchise mark for losses while going 3-14 in their first season under general manager Ryan Poles and coach Matt Eberflus.

Poles pulled off a blockbuster trade for a play-making receiver in March when he acquired DJ Moore from Carolina. The Bears moved down eight spots and also got a haul of selections in return.

The Bears also had the first selection of the third round at No. 64 late Friday. They had two picks each in the fourth (103, 133), one in the fifth (148) and two in the seventh (218, 258) rounds.