Will Bears add more pass rushing talent via draft?
Healthy, complete seasons from 2016 first-round draft pick Leonard Floyd and veteran Pernell McPhee, and a more consistent year from veteran Willie Young would give the Bears a strong nucleus of edge rushers.
But, in a draft loaded with talented pass rushers, it wouldn't be a surprise to see the Bears add at least one.
All three played well at different times last year when the Bears had 37 sacks and finished No. 8 in sack percentage.
Young had 6 sacks in the first six games but just 1 ½ in the final 10 games. McPhee missed the first six games recovering from off-season knee surgery and was ineffective in the final two because of a torn labrum that required postseason shoulder surgery. In between he had 4 sacks.
Floyd battled multiple injuries throughout the season but had 4 ½ sacks in three mid-season games and finished with 7. He showed enough to prove that, if he can stay on the field, he's a difference maker.
Lamarr Houston had a team-best 8 sacks in 2015, but that performance was bracketed by season-ending knee injuries in '14 and '16, when he played a total of 10 games and had 1 sack. His $7 million cap hit for 2017 doesn't portend well for his future with the Bears.
This year's draft features a bumper crop of edge rushers -- for the Bears, that's outside linebackers in their base 3-4 defense who can also move to defensive end when the defense converts to a 4-3 in obvious passing situations.
Since Houston will be 30 before training camp begins, Young will be 32 in September and McPhee's health is iffy, the Bears might kick the tires on a young pass rusher at some point in the draft.
Edge rushers drafted by the Bears in the past 10 years
Year Rd. Pos. Player School
2016 1 OLB Leonard Floyd Georgia
2012 1 DE-OLB Shea McClellin Boise State
2007 2 DE Dan Bazuin Cent. Michigan
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