The 2015 NFL Draft is still eight months (or so) away, and we don’t even know where or when it will be held. Regardless of these minor details, we here at Grizzly Detail are profiling players that could be on the Chicago Bears’ radar when they make their selections next year.
OT Jake Fisher, Oregon
In what was arguably the most anticipated game of the weekend, the Oregon Ducks and Michigan State Spartans did battle in Eugene on Saturday afternoon. Going into the game, there was a lot of interest in how Spartans defensive end Shilique Calhoun would fare against a talented, fast-paced offense, but instead of playing a starring role, Calhoun inadvertently showed the skillset of the left tackle he was going up against.
Fisher, who stands at 6-foot-6, has the freakish athleticism of Kyle Long, and he has the polish that could have NFL teams salivating next year. Even in one-on-one matchups with Calhoun, Fisher never looked flustered, kept his man centered up, and used his massive strength without having to rely on holds or chop blocks.
It was an absolute clinic of blocking brilliance, and the Bears would be well-advised to pay attention.
OT Andrus Peat, Stanford
Another huge game over the weekend involved the Pac-12 as Stanford and USC went up against each other in northern California. Even though the Trojans pulled off the road victory over the Cardinal, Peat was a player that consistently showed up in highlight film for all the right reasons.
In the first three plays of the game, Peat showed incredible versatility as he moved seamlessly between right guard (where he drove into the second level to downfield block on a running play), left guard, and left tackle. No matter what position he was in, he would do whatever he was asked to with reckless abandon. Stay at home and protect the quarterback? Done. Go out with the running back and drill an unsuspecting linebacker into last week with a huge block? Also done.
Peat has all the tools to be a top-tier player when draft time rolls around, but if he ends up slipping down the board, his versatility and athleticism could very well put him on the Bears’ radar. Imagining an offensive line with Long at right tackle and Peat at left tackle has to give Jay Cutler a warm fuzzy feeling, and the Bears should absolutely target him if they get the chance.
ILB Denzel Perryman, Miami (FL)
We’re cheating a bit on this one, but despite playing last Monday, Perryman made a big impression against the Louisville Cardinals. The Hurricanes did drop a 31-13 decision in the game, but there are a couple of reasons we still wanted to showcase Perryman’s skills.
First and foremost on that list was the fact that the game was much closer than the scoreline would indicate, with the Hurricanes only trailing by eight points after three quarters. The second was that Perryman showed the kind of ability to diagnose a run play that guys like Shea McClellin and Jon Bostic haven’t been able to in their careers.
On a third-and-one play, the Cardinals attempted to rush the ball up the middle. Waiting back a brief moment after the snap, Perryman saw the B-gap open up in the line, fired into it, and tackled the ball-carrier for a one yard loss. On the very next play, the Cardinals attempted the same thing, and once again it was Perryman that drove into the hole and stopped the play for no gain.
With a great mix of quick feet and great strength, Perryman would be an ideal Emery candidate because of his athleticism and intelligence. If the Bears decide to draft a top-tier linebacker next year, he should be on their list.