Gervon Dexter Sr.

Grading the Bears’ selection of Gervon Dexter Sr. in the 2nd round of the 2023 NFL Draft

The Chicago Bears selected Florida defensive lineman Gervon Dexter Sr. with the No. 53 pick in the second round of the 2023 NFL Draft. It’s a pick that will raise eyebrows among Bears fans, who were hopeful GM Ryan Poles would target a player like Minnesota center John Michael Schmitz or Northwestern defensive lineman Adetomiwa Adebawore.

Dexter (6-foot-6, 310 pounds) is more of a traits than production player at this point in his development. He started all 13 games in 2022 and finished the season with 55 tackles and two sacks.

“Dexter is frequently slow off snap, which tends to have a domino effect on both his hands and positioning in a negative way,”’s Lance Zierlein wrote in his scouting report. “His size and traits help him make plays even after being blocked early in the rep, but he will need to improve his hand usage as a pro. He’s a limited pass rusher with below-average quickness and rush skill but can get there eventually if the play extends. Dexter’s physical profile might be hard for teams to ignore, and he could become a more consistent performer in a 3-4 defense.”

Perhaps Coach Matt Eberflus views Gervon Dexter in the same mold as DeForest Buckner. But the physical similarities don’t translate to a similar style of play.

There’s no other way to say it: Poles reached on Dexter this early in the 2023 NFL Draft. There’s a good chance he would’ve been available in the third round, if not later. It’s not that Dexter is a bad player; he has a chance to emerge as a better pro than he was as a Gator. But he needs a lot of work.

I like the idea behind the pick — any additional talent for the defensive line is a welcome sight. But Dexter wouldn’t have been my first choice, and I think that opinion will be widely shared across the league.


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