Bears draft 24-year-old Tennessee WR Velus Jones in third round

After choosing CB Kyler Gordon and S Jaquan Brisker in the second round, they went with Jones in the third at No. 71.

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Tennessee wide receiver Velus Jones Jr. celebrates scoring a touchdown against Georgia last season.

The Bears drafted Tennessee wide receiver Velus Jones Jr. in the third round of the NFL Draft.

Wade Payne/AP

Barring a surprise trade, Bears general manager Ryan Poles wrapped up Friday night by drafting Tennessee wide receiver Velus Jones in the third round at No. 71 overall.


It was Poles’ third selection of draft after taking Washington cornerback Kyler Gordon and Penn State safety Jaquan Brisker in the second round at Nos. 39 and 48, respectively.

Jones had 62 catches for 807 yards and seven touchdowns last season, as well as an SEC-best 628 kick return yards and a touchdown and 272 punt return yards.

Jones is 6-foot, 200 pounds and will turn 25 in two weeks. He is actually five months older than Bears third-year receiver Darnell Mooney.

Jones began playing at Southern Cal in 2016 and transferred to Tennessee in 2020. Before last season, his career best was 280 yards.

The Bears likely will wait until the fifth round Saturday to make their next pick. They have two fifth-rounders at Nos. 148 and 150, then a sixth-rounder at No. 186.

The extra fifth-round pick (No. 150) is from trading wide receiver Anthony Miller and a seventh-rounder to the Texans last year. The Bears are missing their fourth-round pick from the trade to get quarterback Justin Fields a year ago.

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