Bears Draft Target: Jayden Reed
Trevor Ruszkowski - USA Today Sports

Bears Draft Target: Jayden Reed

by - Senior Writer -

With the NFL draft happening three weeks from Thursday, fans are getting anxious about what this team will do. How can they not be anxious after what they have seen Ryan Poles do so far this offseason?

What was expected to be a busy offseason for the Bears was even more active than expected during the first wave of free agency, where the Bears spent more than half of their available cap space to address the defense. They also traded the No. 1 pick to Carolina in exchange for top WR DJ Moore as the Bears continued to plug in the holes on their roster.

While some experts out there think the Bears will trade the No. 9 pick at some point, that will not likely happen unless they receive an offer they can't refuse. Who gives them that offer is an entirely different story, and it will come on draft night if there is a team desperate enough to go after a specific player.

Most of our discussions have circled around who the Bears would take in the first round, and rightfully so, but there are seven rounds in an NFL draft. That means that the Bears will be making plenty of selections to find some quality players.

Sure, first-round talents are the ones that teams are counting on to contribute immediately, but there are players taken on day two that can also make an impact or even start for a team. One of those players is Michigan St. WR Jayden Reed, who is set to meet with the Bears ahead of this year's draft.

Reed was the top WR target for the Spartans offense last season, and Luke Getsy got an up-close look at what Reed can do during the Senior Bowl. The 6-0 185 pound Reed played on the outside at MSU, but may be forced to move into a slot position in the NFL. If that is the case, it may be a good option, as he does bring a lot to the table.

The 2022 season was a strong showing for Reed as he finished the season with 55 receptions for 636 yards and five scores. That followed up a 2021 campaign where he hauled in 59 receptions for 1026 yards and seven scores. For his career, Reed finished with just under 3000 career receiving yards while also bringing in 19 scores.

A native of Naperville, Reed grew up a Bears fan, so getting drafted by the team he grew up rooting for would be a dream come true. What he lacks in size, Reed makes up for with speed, as he was clocked in the low 4.4 range for his 40-yard time. Pair him with Darnell Mooney, Velus Jones, and Moore, and the Bears could have one of the faster WR rooms in the NFL, which could pose a lethal combo with Justin Fields.

One thing that many scouts love about Reed is that he plays bigger than he is. The Ohio State game is a prime example of that, as he took on some of the bigger Corners in the game and held his own. Along with speed, Reed is also a great route runner and uses his speed to accelerate during his routes.

He has good hands and the ability to make great plays on the ball and is a tremendous WR regarding back-shoulder catches. That alone makes him a tough cover at times, and someone Fields could utilize on the sidelines.

If there are some negatives to consider regarding Reed, you can look at his route running as he tends to get lazy. That often leads to him not finishing his routes which leads to incompletions. He is also a player who is very hesitant to go over the middle, as he has a tough time hanging onto catches in traffic. Reed draws NFL comparisons to Greg Ward, so you could have a nice role-player value pick at the WR position with him.

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