Wide receiver was a bigger 2023 NFL Draft need for the Chicago Bears before the trade for DJ Moore, but there’s still a chance Ohio State’s Jaxon Smith-Njigba is the team’s pick at No. 9 overall.
The Bears have suffered through a wide receiver deficit over the last several seasons, and while the current roster is stronger at the position than it’s been in years, some prospects are too talented to pass up.
Smith-Njigba may be one of them.
The former Ohio State star broke out in 2021 with 95 catches for 1,606 yards and nine touchdowns. His box score wasn’t nearly as impressive this season after suiting up for only three games. But stats don’t determine draft status. It’ll be especially true for the Buckeyes pass-catcher.
Jaxon Smith-Njigba silenced concerns about his speed and athleticism at the 2023 NFL Combine and his pro day. His jumps and cone drills were remarkable in Indianapolis, and his on-campus 4.48 40-yard dash was faster than most scouts expected.
Now, it’s back to the tape, where few wide receivers will match Smith-Njigba’s body of work.
In this NFL Draft series here on Bears Talk, you get to form your own opinion on whether a prospect warrants the Bears’ consideration at No. 9 overall (or even later).
Next up: Jaxon Smith-Njigba.
(Previous film rooms: Paris Johnson Jr. | Peter Skoronski | Broderick Jones)