Bears Draft: Scouting Georgia

The draft is a month away and pro days are coming to an end. The Bears made their way to Georgia last week to get a look at two prospects that could help the offense.

Last Thursday, at least one representative from every NFL team was in Athens to watch more than a dozen draft-eligible Bulldogs audition for the draft and a spot on a professional roster.

In search for a playmaker in the passing game and a dose of youth on the offensive line, two prospects stood out to the Bears.

Several mock drafts have the Bears taking Georgia tight end Leonard Pope with the 26th pick in next month's draft. The six-foot-7, 258-pound Pope didn't run the 40 because he was happy with his time of 4.65 seconds at the NFL Combine.

Pope is rated as the second best prospect at the position by Scout.com, behind only Maryland's Vernon Davis.

Pope caught 64 balls for 1,023 yards and 10 touchdowns over the course of his last two seasons at Georgia. His massive frame also makes him formidable asset in the running game.

"I like to block first. I'm a physical blocker and I also create a lot of mismatch problems with defenses," Pope said. "Because of my size I can out-jump most of my defenders and pretty much try to make plays out there."

While Pope participated only in receiving and blocking drills, the tight ends coaches from the Cincinnati Bengals (who pick 24th) and Jacksonville Jaguars (who pick 28th) came to Athens to work him out. Meaning, Pope could potentially be off the board by the time the Bears are on the clock.

Another player of interest is offensive lineman Max Jean-Gilles. He had a solid day of work, which means something to a player who is likely to be draft in the second or third round.

"It went real good," he said. "I made some money."

Despite the fact that Jean-Gilles dropped from 355 pounds to 343 over the last month, his bench press repetitions at 225 pounds went from 27 in Indianapolis to 31.

In a relatively thin class of interior linemen, Jean-Giles is the top guard prospect according to Scout.com rankings. The Bears are set for this season with Ruben Brown and Roberto Garza as the projected starters at guard and Terrence Metcalf as the top reserve.

However, Brown is in the final year of his contract taking a player like Jean-Giles would allow him to develop for a season before being asked to contribute.

While the Bears are unlikely to land both Pope and Jean-Giles, the Bears couldn't go wrong with a one-two punch from Georgia to revamp the offense.


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