Texans’ draft predicament makes Bears’ No. 1 pick trade look even better

Texans’ draft predicament makes Bears’ No. 1 pick trade look better originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

Two months ago, Bears general manager Ryan Poles owned the No. 1 overall pick and had his eyes on a historic trade return with a plan to trade down twice to secure everything he desired.

But the Bears and the Houston Texans, who sit at No. 2, couldn’t see eye-to-eye on trade value for the No. 1 pick, and talks stalled out. Poles had an offer from the Carolina Panthers that gave him an impressive haul headlined by wide receiver DJ Moore. The Bears’ general manager could have waited to see if his two-trade plan would materialize, but he pulled the trigger and turned the No. 1 pick into a top-flight receiver and three top-60 picks.

“The noise around it was crazy compensation, but I think at some point when you feel comfortable with what you’re receiving, you pull the trigger,” Poles said in March of his decision to trade the pick in the early stages of the process. “Sometimes you wait too long and things move on. Trades are hard. When you’re a part of them and they pop up and you’re having those conversations, they’re not comfortable conversations, especially when you’re moving on from a player. So the longer that you’re talking about it and thinking about it, you can start to sway a little bit.

“You think like this could get even bigger, but I also think that if you get a little greedy, it can come back to get you, too.”

Poles’ decision looks smarter by the day, especially as the Texans find themselves in a conundrum with the draft nine days out.

On Monday, NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero reported that Alabama quarterback Bryce Young has canceled the remainder of his pre-draft visits, signaling that he will likely be the Panthers’ pick at No. 1 overall.

Reports throughout the pre-draft process have pinpointed Young as the quarterback the Texans coveted at No. 2. A wild Week 18 win, and their inability to strike a deal with Poles appears to have cost them Young and has them searching for a trade partner for the No. 2 pick that might not materialize.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Monday that there’s a chance the Indianapolis Colts could get the second-best quarterback in the draft at No. 4.

That report suggests that both the Texans (No. 2) and Cardinals (No. 3) could be having trouble moving down in the draft since quarterback-needy teams are aware neither is in the market for a signal-caller.

The Texans are especially in a tough position since any team interested in jumping the Colts for the No. 2 quarterback in the class can try to strike a cheaper deal with Arizona at No. 3 if they believe Houston isn’t in the market for a non-Young quarterback.

While there’s still a chance the Texans take a quarterback not named Young at No. 2, the betting odds now heavily Alabama edge rusher Will Anderson be selected at No. 2. That suggests the bookmakers are aware that the Texans both aren’t interested in a quarterback that isn’t Young and are having problems moving the pick.

Poles’ decision to move when he did looks smarter by the moment.

He could have waited on the Panthers’ deal, hoping to move down to No. 2 before moving to No. 9. But he could have also found himself in the same predicament the Texans now find themselves — looking for a dance partner at No. 2 with no leverage and a dwindling window to find the return needed to spark a rebuild.

Patience is a virtue, but Poles was right to move when he did. The greed could have put them in an unsalvageable position — one that could have delayed or derailed the Bears’ rebuild timeline.

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