Cleat Geeks

A Look at the Bears Draft: Vernon Hargreaves III

The Bears need for a pass-rusher has been the main focus of these recent articles. It is a dire need of the team and snatching one in the first round would be the smart thing to do. But like every other team, there are other immediate needs and very little prospects to choose from. The Bears have a lot of cap space, around 57 million, to add more players like Pernell McPee, a dominate rusher off the edge. In addition, the Bears hold the 11th pick, will they stick to the pass-rusher mentality or will the cornerback position be addressed right away?VernonHargreavesINT2

Next up on the Bears possible draft picks: Vernon Hargreaves, III 5’ 11” 192lb University of Florida

The Bears already have a young CB Kyle Fuller and a skilled veteran in Alan Ball. So why draft Hargreaves? Well, there has been talk about moving Fuller to FS and that would open up another CB spot. With Tracy Porter set to be an unrestricted free agent, it leaves Hargreaves a spot on Vic Fangios defense.

Hargreaves runs a 4.40 40 yard dash, faster than Jalen Ramsey who is ranked ahead of him in top CB prospects. With the NFL combine coming up, the speed battle will definitely exist between the two as to see who gets to shake Rodger Godell’s hand first. Many teams are torn between the two guys, making this the must see battle at the combine this weekend.

Vernon Hargreaves earned first-team all-SEC honors during his three years playing for the Gators. His All-American honors in 2014 (three interceptions, 13 pass breakups) and 2015 (four interceptions, four pass break-ups) due to his playmaking ability.

The best part of Hargreaves game is two fold, speed and athleticism. He has the ability to stay in hip- pockets on long routes and his vertical allows him to go up over receivers and get the ball at  the highest point. “Excels from press, off or zone coverage. Fiery competitor with a strong desire to own the pass. Has quick, soft hands. Posted 38 passes defensed and 10 interceptions over the last three years. Could see early kick or punt return action. Unwilling to stay blocked and doesn’t hesitate for one moment in run support and against wide receiver screens. Chest­-up tackler who runs through his target.”- NFL.com scouting reportFlordiaGatorsteam

Just like everyone, you have to put on some muscle if you want to play with the big boys.  Hargreaves could put on at least 10 more pounds to be an elite corner. Another part of his game he needs to work on is his recovery speed. Wide receivers tend to blow by him, especially on the deep ball but with drills and overall footwork, it will be an easy transition to the NFL spotlight.

Hargreaves would fit really well in Chicago. Not only would he be able to start right away, but he has the potential to be a franchise CB. The Bears have lost both Tim Jennings and Charles Tillman in recent years and are still trying to find replacements. Fuller, Amos, and now Hargreaves could form one heck of a secondary and compete at a high level for the years ahead.

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