Former Bears general manager Jerry Angelo joined WGWG-FM’s “Kap & Haugh” show Wednesday and provided some insight into the process that went into drafting Lance Briggs with the 68th overall pick in the 2003 draft.
“I do remember it pretty clearly,” Angelo told the radio hosts. “We were going to take a linebacker and said we were gonna take one in the third round. If memory serves, we had three still on the board when we were picking. The Jets took a linebacker out of Michigan, and I forget who the other one was, and Lance was the third we had rated. We would have taken any of the three. We had a little luck. The other two never really had real careers, certainly nothing the way Lance did.
“We were fortunate there. Lance was a great player. The best thing about him, he didn’t have great speed, but he had great instincts. I had never seen a better short yardage linebacker in my career. In short yardage, he was the best linebacker I’d ever seen. He had a knack to know where the ball was, make a great hit, and those will be great memories for me about him.
“We had some luck on that day when Lance fell to us.”
Briggs’ career in Chicago has likely come to an end after being place on injured reserve last week.
Victor Hobson (Michigan) was taken 53rd overall by the Jets, and linebackers Alonzo Jackson (Florida State) and Antwan Peek (Cincinnati) were also drafted before Briggs in the second and third rounds. Peek went with the pick right before the Bears.
“Marty Barrett did a great job evaluating him,” Angelo said of Briggs. “It was only the speed. If he ran better he probably would have gone higher.”
On Tuesday, during an interview on the Lance Briggs Show on Comcast SportsNet, Briggs said he was thankful for his time in Chicago and thanked Marty Barrett for “making sure Jerry Angelo knew my name.”