The Bears start the fourth round with a trade up for Nick Kwiatkoski

The Bears start the fourth round with a trade up for Nick Kwiatkoski
MORGANTOWN, WV - SEPTEMBER 26: Nick Kwiatkoski #35 of the West Virginia Mountaineers in action during the game against the Maryland Terrapins on September 26, 2015 at Mountaineer Field in Morgantown, West Virginia. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

The Bears opened up the fourth round by moving up four slots from No. 117 to No. 113 to select West Virginia linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski on Saturday afternoon.

Los Angeles received No. 117 overall and No. 206 overall in exchange for the No. 113 pick. A former safety turned linebacker Kwiatkoski led the Mountaineers in tackles the last three seasons. The 6’2″, 243-pounder had 85 tackles (10 for a loss), four sacks, three interceptions, seven pass breakups, one fumble recovery and a forced fumble as a senior captain.

A three-year starter, Kwiatkoski totaled 303 tackles (28.5 for a loss), six sacks, six interceptions, 10 pass breakups, two fumble recoveries and three forced fumbles in four seasons at West Virginia. He played his freshman season at SAM linebacker before moving to the WILL as a sophomore. He came into college as a 205-pound safety.

Pro Football Focus had him as their 20th best player available here on Day 3, saying this:

“Kwiatkowski ranked fourth in the draft class as a run defender at +21.7 and fifth in coverage a +9.0 as his all-around strong play should make him a dependable starter at the next level.”

This kid played wideout and safety in high school, but moved over to linebacker where he excelled in pass coverage and made a fair share of solo tackles (208). Kwiatkoski is the third defensive player added in this year’s class joining first round linebacker Leonard Floyd and third round defensive end Jonathan Bullard.

“A long line of great linebackers, that’s something that makes me really happy to be a part of,” he said in a conference call with the Chicago media.

Behind starters Danny Trevathan and Jerrell Freeman and rotational pieces Christian Jones, Jonathan Anderson and John Timu, Kwiatkoski will take his time to develop. He’ll be a standout on special teams alongside Lamin Barrow.

Final Thoughts

Kwiatkoski is a tough kid who has overachieved his whole life. He isn’t the fastest or tallest, but he is strong and aggressive and fits the bill in Vic Fangio’s 3-4 defense. More competition for a defense that is looking a whole lot better in 2016.

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

Thoughts on the selection of Nick Kwiatkoski at No. 113 for the Bears?

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