FOX Sports 2024 Chicago Bears 7-round mock draft: Caleb Williams isn't the only marquee name

The Chicago Bears are in control of the 2024 NFL Draft given that they have the first overall pick this year thanks to a trade last offseason. It couldn't have worked out better for the Bears as they round out a multi-year rebuild with their hopeful quarterback of the future.

While they're in control of the board, there isn't much mystery. The Bears are fully expected to take USC quarterback Caleb Williams with the No. 1 overall pick.

Where this gets interesting is later on in the top 10, where Chicago also holds the ninth overall pick. Between wheelings and dealings in the past year, trading for DE Montez Sweat at the deadline last season and trading for WR Keenan Allen a few weeks ago, the Bears now hold only four total picks. 

We have to include both Sweat and Allen when we talk about this draft class in totality and when viewing it from that lens, having four picks isn't the end of the world, especially when three of the four are in the top 75.

However, that doesn't preclude the Bears from being a trade-down candidate. Or a trade-up candidate, for that matter. Or for standing pat and taking a blue-chip starter at a position of need at No. 9.

With that in mind, I took a stab at a full seven-round mock for the Bears. Spoiler alert: I have them acquiring a bit more capital but still getting their guy. Call me an idealist.

2024 Chicago Bears Mock Draft Selections

First round, No. 1 overall: QB Caleb Williams, USC

This is the obvious one, and I'm not going to overthink it. I'd rather be wrong about the Bears selecting Williams with everyone else than needlessly out on a desert island. Williams comes from an offense at USC that had pro level components, and the heavy play-action he was used to won't change under new Bears offensive coordinator Shane Waldron. 

Williams may not be "generational," as the term has been so grossly overused, but he's a rare talent in a great quarterback class and therefore should be the final major piece of the puzzle for Chicago. General manager Ryan Poles was brought in to "break cycles" as he put it on "The Pat McAfee Show" — Williams is his chance to do it.

First round, No. 13 overall: TE Brock Bowers, Georgia

You may notice that this isn't the Bears' original No. 9 overall pick. The Las Vegas Raiders were on the phone wanting to move up into the top 10 — perhaps for a tackle, perhaps for a quarterback — but either way, they gave up their third-round pick at No. 77 to do it. That allows Chicago to add some valuable draft capital. And would you look at that: The Bears are still able to snag Bowers. 

I want to caution you against thinking of him as just a tight end. Bowers is an offensive piece with a ton of versatility. Especially with the way Waldron's offense uses multiple tight-end sets, he would thrive in Chicago. A player like Bowers, who not only has natural pass-catching hands, but can block decently well and lead block even better, is more important to this new Bears offense than a WR3 at this point. That's not to say Chicago doesn't still need a receiver, but with the extra capital, the Bears can be more flexible on when they take that player.

Third round, No. 75 overall: WR Brenden Rice, USC

And wouldn't you know it, the Bears get their WR3 with their next pick. This is Chicago's original third-round pick and Rice is still on the board. Why not pair Williams with a familiar target at the next level? Rice, the son of Hall of Famer Jerry Rice, was used primarily as an outside receiver at USC but got plenty of work over the middle of the field. His 6-foot-2 size helps him, along with his ability to follow the leader in scramble drills. He'd round out the Bears' pass-catchers nicely with fellow outside receiver DJ Moore, with Allen, and with Bowers working out of the slot. 

Third round, No. 77 overall: Edge Bralen Trice, Washington (via trade with Las Vegas)

Just two picks later, Chicago is back on the clock thanks to the deal with the Raiders. Here, the Bears snag an edge to play opposite Sweat. Trice finished No. 1 in all of FBS in pressures in both 2022 and 2023, per Dane Brugler of The Athletic. He's a physical player and stayed healthy throughout his college career, playing in every game in his last three seasons at Washington. With the favorable matchups he'd likely get opposite Sweat, Trice could easily translate his college production to the NFL.

Fourth round, No. 122 overall: CB Cam Hart, Notre Dame

I didn't like the value for offensive line depth at this point in the draft so I went back to defense, where the Bears still need to add to their corner rotation. They locked Jaylon Johnson up to a new deal, and they have a budding player in Tyrique Stevenson, but after that the depth is a bit concerning. Hart comes from a man-heavy scheme at Notre Dame and his 6-foot-3 frame along with a 4.5 40-yard dash time give him the size and athleticism combo that could be great for Chicago, especially at this point in the draft.

Carmen Vitali covers the NFC North for FOX Sports. Carmen had previous stops with The Draft Network and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. She spent six seasons with the Bucs, including 2020, which added the title of Super Bowl Champion (and boat-parade participant) to her résumé. You can follow Carmen on Twitter at @CarmieV.


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