At the NFL Owners’ meetings in New Orleans earlier this month, Lovie Smith acknowledged what others have been insisting for months and years: The Bears could use a bigger receiver, someone that can compliment Johnny Knox, Devin Hester and Earl Bennett.
Smith also said size may not be the determining factor if they do choose a receiver.
“That’s a fair question,” The Bears coach said when asked if he would prefer a bigger body at that position. “Most of our guys, Johnny [Knox] — Earl [Bennett is] a little bigger — they are smaller receivers. So to just add a little bit different flavor wouldn’t be a bad idea. But as much as anything though, we’re just trying to add a guy that can play ball. A big guy, that doesn’t fill all your needs, just adding a big guy. I thought our guys did a good job of blocking. You still want to be able to run the ball. You could make the case for always having a bigger guy to be able to block a little bit more. It’s more of that than anything else.”
The problem is, there aren’t many highly rated big receivers in the 2011 draft class.
Georgia receiver A.J. Green and Alabama’s Julio Jones are both 6-foot-4 and are almost assured of being the top two receivers taken, which means they could be long gone by the time the Bears are on the clock unless they decide to trade up.
At 6-foot-4 1/2, Pittsburgh’s Jonathan Baldwin may be another option.