Defensive line is the pick in Round 3 with UF's Jonathan Bullard

Defensive line is the pick in Round 3 with UF's Jonathan Bullard
COLUMBIA , MO - OCTOBER 10: Defensive lineman Jonathan Bullard #90 of the Florida Gators in action against the Missouri Tigers at Memorial Stadium on October 10, 2015 in Columbia, Missouri. (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)

I had the Bears taking defensive end Jonathan Bullard in the second round in my third and final mock draft, but he went to Chicago either way, in the third round (No. 72 overall) on Friday night.

After taking offensive lineman Cody Whitehair (No. 56 overall) in the second round, the Bears went defense at a position of need, the defensive line.

Bullard, a three-year starter at Florida racked up 175 tackles (34 for a loss), 12 sacks and five pass breakups.

Fresh off a career-best 6.5 sacks along with 17.5 tackles for a loss, Bullard is a fit as a run stuffer who can occasionally break through for a sack. At 6’3”, 285 lbs he isn’t the quickest (4.93-second 40-yard dash), but he is thickly built and looking to get stronger.

The Bears’ defensive line was in shambles last season and Bullard will come in and help against the run right away. He’s strong enough to bring down players in the backfield often as a stuffer.

I like Bullard’s overall game. He’s praised as a versatile defensive lineman who is following in the footsteps of former Gator stars Shariff Floyd and Dominique Easley. He made six starts at nose tackle, five at defensive tackle and three at end as a senior. Something to note here is that Bullard battled arm, knee and shoulder injuries during the second half of his final season. He also missed a game as a true freshman due to a knee injury.

Expect Bullard to contribute right away. With Eddie Goldman and Akiem Hicks penciled in as two of three spots along the defensive line, Bullard should compete with Ego Ferguson for the other 5-technique end spot. He played inside often at 3-technique last season after moving around previously. In a deep defensive line class, Bullard gives the Bears yet another big bodied lineman to build around.


He is quick off the snap and gives you it his all on each and every snap. Bullard was available simply because he doesn’t have the big sack numbers. But he is a solid player who will be a good pro.

Final Thoughts

I love this pick and think he’s a steal at this juncture of the draft. Bullard can line up anywhere on Vic Fangio’s defensive front. He’s an underrated player who should give the Bears a boost. Will Sutton, Cornelius Washington, Bruce Gaston are all depth guys competing for snaps with Bullard.

In case you missed it: My breakdowns of the Leonard Floyd pick from the first round and Cody Whitehair in round two.

Thoughts on the selection of Jonathan Bullard at No. 72 for the Bears?

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