Day 1 Diary: GM Jerry Angelo

One of the scenarios Jerry Angelo envisioned was Greg Olsen, unquestionably the best tight end in the draft, falling to him at No. 31. That indeed did happen, and Bears fans from near and far are incredibly happy. But the rest of his selections on Day 1 were not greeted with the same kind of enthusiasm. Angelo addressed the media at Halas Hall after the selection of Dan Bazuin in Round 2.

General manager Jerry Angelo
Opening statement:
"Needless to say we're very excited about our number one pick in Greg Olsen. We had targeted Greg during our meetings. We felt that there might be an outside chance that he would still be there, given the fact that he really was the only tight end that was slotted in the first round from what we had heard from different teams. So, it worked out very well for us. He gives us something that our coaches wanted to address at the position, not more athletic because we like Dez Clark's athleticism, but we wanted to get another athletic tight end and speed was something we targeted at that position as well. We felt very good that he met our definition going into the draft of what we wanted at that position. It was a position of need given that we only had two on the roster. We had seen Greg. Bob Boras, the position coach had done a lot of work on Greg as Ron Turner and everybody felt very, very good about it, as myself and our scouts as well. Our next pick, a defensive end out of Central Michigan, Dan Bazuin, the reason we looked at him, again, defensive lineman, highly productive, 35 sacks, approximately, led the nation his junior year in plays for a loss, something like 60, has great motor, fits our scheme, good run player. Obviously the production on third down as a pass rusher speaks for itself. Hopefully he's a very good combination player and a good three-down player. We felt the value of that pick was the reason that we made it. We didn't really see it as a need. Again, more relying on the value and we all felt good about that."

On Greg Olsen's lack of blocking ability:
"Every position is going to have a strength and an area of concern. We wanted to get an athletic tight end. Somebody that could stretch a defense, good hands, and you have to compromise some things and we compromised the blocking. He's not a great blocker nor will he ever be a great blocker. He will be an efficient blocker in the framework of what we want to do. John Gilmore does a lot of the dirty work in that area. So, square peg in a square hole, that's what we are looking for. If you find a great blocker, you find a great receiver. If we had the number one pick in the draft, we might not have found him. So, he fit with what we wanted in the position and he compliments the other guys. That is what our coaches wanted to emphasize with our offense and we felt real good about getting Greg."

Did you field calls for Lance Briggs?
"No."

On how Greg Olsen fits in with his philosophy:
"As you know, or will know as you get to know him, his dad is a very successful high school coach in New Jersey. He eats, drinks and sleeps it. We feel very, very good about him in that regard. If you hear me talk about that football character, and I won't get into the specifics of it, I'm sure that those of you that follow us, listen to me know what that is and we felt that he was exemplary in that area. The same can be said for Bazuin as well."

On drafting a player who is represented by Drew Rosenhaus:
"I kidded with Drew, I told him that there was no axe to grind. I saw him too when he was on the phone, while San Diego was picking and I'm sure everybody was looking and thinking, boy San Diego, Olsen and Gates, and I'm saying to myself, this guy could screw up a one car funeral. So, that was the only twist from my end. I shared that with Drew too when I got him on the phone. It really didn't do anything in terms of swaying us. We're not going to let an agent get in the way of taking a player we felt very good about."

On the draft strategy:
"The players we have targeted probably about ten picks prior to our pick; there were six on the board, we felt really good, we were probably going to have a decision with two and maybe even three and then it got down to one right away as it usually does. I thought about maybe even trying to move up given the fact that we had targeted him. We had fielded an inordinate amount of calls, three, four with great packages to trade down. There was a very good market in terms of if we wanted to do something, but we just felt strongly that we needed to stay and take him at that point. We were hoping at 37, we would also get the opportunity to trade down. We didn't know for sure, that's a little bit nomadic, but it worked out that we had a lot of takers there too and that really worked out well given the fact that San Diego was very committed to getting that player so they were willing to do a good bit, so we felt like we couldn't pass that up. We got a good football player in Bazuin as well. We felt real good about how it all transpired."

Where is Dan Bazuin going to play?
"Left defensive end. That is where he will line up. It creates more competition at the position. It gets another defensive lineman in the mix. I feel he could play inside as a strong tackle, that would be as a pass rusher over the guard. I don't know that the coaches will do that. We felt, in evaluating him, he had the ability to do that. We just liked the football player. We got another defensive lineman in the mix. You know how we covet defensive linemen. If it creates good competition, the best man wins, so to speak. We play a lot of defensive linemen on game day, so that will all sort itself out. It was really just the value of the player."

On selecting a defensive end as opposed to a defensive tackle:
"We were focused on value. There were a couple of players that went ahead, one in particular, a tackle. We just felt that the end was the better value and that was the direction that we chose."

On why he didn't field calls regarding Lance Briggs:
"I have a theory, but I really don't want to get into that. People asked me that earlier. It is what it is. His agent put a value on him. We talked with him in the summer and we felt that our value was accurate and he felt his was and we just said we will see how it plays itself out. We did have one team call us, as we all know which was Washington and it never materialized, so really, I don't know what more to say than that."

Is a trade at this point an impossibility?
"No. I'm not going to say that for sure. I'm not going to rule that out totally. I was asked that question before this weekend and I said that I wouldn't rule that out regardless of what we do on draft day."

Is your asking price to high?
"No. All I can do is put a value on a player. He's a two-time Pro Bowl player. The franchise tag says that you are required and/or you are well within your rights with two first round picks. Now, that doesn't always happen, but the franchise tag does have meaning and I told that to the agent when we went into this. I said that I'm not shopping him to shop him. The spirit of the franchise tag is not to shop a player to get the most you can and then trade him. That's not the spirit of the franchise tag, so I'm not going to get into it any more than that. We talked to one team and it just didn't work out."

On drafting a linebacker:
"I'm not going to rule it out. We'll see. There may or may not be somebody that we like. There are a few guys that we do like on the board. We'll see how that plays out. They may or may not be there. There might be other players there, but I'm not going to make it the focus going forward in the next four, five or six picks that we have."

On trading one of the defensive ends:
"Anything can happen. I'm not going to rule anything out. That gives us the latitude if we chose to do that. I'm not going to get into that. We took him with the understanding that he was the best player and that is why we did what we did. Obviously our opponents got pretty good today. I'm talking about Detroit and Minnesota in particular on offense, so we want to make sure we can continue to play good defense given the two players that just came into our division."

Categorize the first day of the draft:
"I felt it was good for us. It pretty much went how we expected. Had we stayed up there at 37, there might have been a player, a skill position we might have looked at, but we felt the middle rounds, this third round pick that we picked up, the one in the fifth, we got a third next year. We felt that we had a chance to get two more good players. Even in the fifth, we feel pretty good about getting a player that could give us good quality depth and certainly in the third, we feel real good about the potential of the player we may get. Overall, it was a good day. We're at the bottom of each round. You can't get too excited. I don't think they are going to be dusting off a spot in Canton quite yet for anybody, but we do feel good about the players we got. Hopefully, we get a little luck and it falls our way in these next few rounds."

Were you surprised by anything in the draft thus far?
"It didn't really surprise me. I talked to Randy Muller in Miami and I thought that was a really good pick. We all want playmakers, Ted Ginn is a great playmaker, that will bode well for the Dolphins. (Brady) Quinn dropping. There were a few teams up on top that needed a quarterback. Once those teams opted to go in a different direction just like we saw with Aaron Rodgers, they dropped and so Cleveland picked him up. It's a good place for him and I know he will do real well there."

John Crist is the Publisher of Bear Report and Editor in Chief of BearReport.com. To read him every day, visit BearReport.com and become a Chicago Bears insider.

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