Cleat Geeks

A Look at the Bears Draft: Shawn Oakman

As we approach the last week of the NFL regular season, the 2016 NFL draft lineup is almost at a close.  The Bears are currently projected to have the fourteenth pick in the 2016 draft.

The Chicago Bears, 6-9, will play their last game of the season at home vs. Lions.

While a player-off birth is already written off, some player’s jobs may be earned or lost in the game at Soldier Field on Sunday.bearsThroughFootball

However, on a positive note, looking ahead to next season, the Chicago Bears have many holes to fill if they want to have success.  Jay Cutler’s improved play under new offensive coordinator Adam Gase has shown promise from the 32 year old despite lack-luster play the past few years.

With Jay putting up acceptable numbers, do the Bears prioritize finding a QB for the future in this year’s draft?

The switch to a 3-4 under Vic Fangio has done a decent job for the Bears this season. Fangio requested both Jarred Allen and Jon Bostic be traded away largely because they did not fit the system.  The Bears staff has found guys who can play the 3-4 and be key contributors for the upcoming seasons.

But one thing the Bears lack is a dominate pass rusher. There is no JJ Watt or Khalil Mack in Chicago right now but the draft is full of them for 2016. Will that be a top priority for Chicago as the draft comes back to the Windy City in 2016?

Over the next week or so, I will be analyzing and studying possible draft picks for the Chicago Bears.  I will not just be looking for the standout talent, but looking for a player that can have a quick impact and thrive in the new system under John Fox.

First up: Shawn Oakman, DE:  6’ 9” 280lbs, Baylor University

 

The first thing that I see in Oakman is his height.  6’ 9” is advantageous for any player in the NFL at nearly any position.

Another quality Oakman possess is his ability to get to the quarterback. Oakman has 16.5 career sacks at Baylor and his tackles surmount his sack numbers.  Oakman has the speed and strength to get around or run right through offensive linemen to get to the QB. His explosive first step shows flashes of a few particular respected pass rushers, Von Miller and Clay Matthews.

BearsPernellMcPheeWith the switch to the 3-4 base defenses, Oakman would be a perfect fit as the overhang linebacker, just like current Bear, Pernell McPhee, is playing right now.  With his freakish height, immense strength, and speed, Oakman will give offensive lines and running backs something to think about on gameday.

The Bears need a pass rusher; a defensive playmaker which they have not had since Brian Urlacher, shoes that Shea McClelin was expected to fill, yet still hasn’t found his spot on this defense. Shawn Oakman can do just that and become a leader for the Bears defense. With him and McPhee rushing the quarterback, the Bears will have plenty of success in that phase of the game. Their pressure alone with their ability to force throws gives the secondary a chance at a turnover, something the bears have struggled with this season seeing that Kyle Fuller is the only Bear with more than one interception(2).

Oakman is currently projected as a second round pick, but if the Bears are serious on a pass rusher, he is one of the top choices in the 2016 NFL draft.

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