Chicago Sun-Times

Bears looking to hook a defensive end from Texas?

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The Bears took interest Wednesday in an intriguing pass-rushing prospect at the packed Texas Longhorns pro day.

With Southwest scout Chris Ballard on hand for the Brian Orakpo show that drew an estimated 60 NFL types, the Bears were able to get a better look at converted defensive end Henry Melton, who reportedly is on the team's radar.

Melton began his career at Texas as a running back but simply outgrew the position. He was moved to end as a junior in 2007. He grew into the position and had four sacks as a senior to go with 10 tackles for loss. The Austin American-Statesmen reports that Melton has a visit lined up with the Bears. He is also drawing interest from Dallas, Minnesota and Tampa Bay.

Our guess is that would be a trip to Halas Hall rather than a private workout on campus. Melton is 6-3, 269 pounds. He scored 10 touchdowns as a freshman in 2005 when Texas won the national championship but eventually became too big as a fullback. He was not invited to the combine and the Bears likely want to look into his medical history and get to know him a little better. Melton was suspended for three games as a junior following a DWI arrest.

He only helped himself at the pro day. He clocked at 4.64 seconds in the 40-yard dash and had a vertical jump of 34 inches. He also had a broad jump of 10-1.

*** Bears scout Teddy Monago is believed to have attended the pro day Wednesday at Southern Miss.

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I think Chicago is going to bring in a defensive end at some point during the draft, so maybe they'll use one of their compensatory picks later on to bring in Henry Melton. Pierre Walters of Eastern Illinois wouldn't surprise me either, as another possible late pick for Chicago as far as a defensive end.

With Chicago working out a lot of receiver prospects like North Carolina's Hakeem Nicks, Rutgers Kenny Britt, and Ohio states Brian Bobiskie tells me one thing, their probably gonna use their second rounder on a receiver. Nicks, and especially Britt & Robiskie are projected second rounders. All three prospects also fit the mold for the type of receiver Chicago needs, a big bodied possession type to complement Devin Hester. But I'm telling ya, if Jeremy Maclin is available at #18, I bet Chicago pulls the trigger on him. Maclin is a special player with the ability to score any time the ball is in his hands, no matter a catch [22tds], a handoff [6 career rushing tds], or a return [3 punts and 2 kickoffs for tds], Maclin simply makes things happen when he has the ball in his hands. Also, the fact he put up more than 5,600 all-purpose yards is well, ridiculous. J-Mac would be a great addition to go along with running back Matt Forte, tight end Greg Olsen, and receiver Devin Hester. This would give the Bears the type of weapons to put some points on the board, quickly! Maclin has nice size at 6-1 200lbs, and scouts say he is tightly built [muscular]. Maclin would be a nice fit in Ron Turners offense with the ability to turn short or intermediate throws into long touchdowns. Chicago hasn't been associated with J-Mac, but that isn't something I think Angelo wants other teams that covet Maclin knowing.

I think with the addition of tackle Kevin Shaffer yesterday, the Bears will either go Maclin at #18 or Mississippi defensive tackle Peria Jerry. The Bears are a defense first team, and Angelo is known for his defenses. The thing that makes me think Peria Jerry the most, other than Tommie Harris being sidelined for walk throughs, is what Angelo said about his defense never being as dominate as they once were, that isn't something a GM says with out some kind of plan in mind to fix the problem. Maybe the plan is Peria Jerry? we'll see GO BEARS!!

I don't know Kevin...

The Bears already are on the long term hook with Tommie Harris and his injured past/current knee-leg issues.

For the Bears to invest a first round pick on another DT that missed parts of two seasons due to injury and had knee surgery prior to the 2008 season may be a little Risky for Angelo.

No doubt the man has talent, rated at the top at his position on most experts charts but if he winds up having injury issues like Tommie and Dusty then Angelo would be burned at the stake.

I think Angelo will shop his #18 pick now that he has added a few free agents to the O-line. He will try and get a late first round pick plus a late 2'nd rounder and look to shore up WR,FS,OT,DE even OG all within the first 99 selections in this years draft class.

Go Bears !!!

Melton would be a pretty intriguing pick not only as a DE but a solution to short yardage and goaline situations on offense. Not so much to carry the ball but as a lead blocking fullback. I think the Bears should get rid of McKie anyways and use one of the 3 TE or maybe a package with all 3 TE's on the field at the same time.

Bensonsucks, you bring up a very good point about Angelo maybe trading down, if so, he could still land a three-technique in Missouri's Ziggy Hood in the lower first round. Hood is a player Chicago has shown interest in.

Also Bensonsucks, I think if Angelo was hesitant to draft a defensive tackle with an injury history he probably wouldn't have tooken Marcus Harrison in the 3rd last april. Also, 2nd round draft pick Matt Forte had knee issues early in his college career much like Peria Jerry. As for Harrison, aside from off the field issues, Harrison also had injury concers coming out. Angelo took both Forte and Harrison anyways, and they both turned out to be pretty good players as rookies.. The draft is like the lottery, you win some you lose some. Take Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, the biggest knock on him coming out was his knees [durability concerns]. The Vikes took a chance and the guy has been one of the leagues better backs and has proven to be pretty durable. Some guys are not durable in college but prove to be pretty durable in the pros, you just never know for sure until they play. Also, a lot of very durable college players sometimes turn out having injury problems when they hit the pros. Again, you just never know, its a crapshoot.

As for Peria Jerry, he hasn't had a major injury since 2006 and it was a foot injury. Jerry missed four games that season due to the foot injury. Jerry has been pretty durable the last 2 seasons playing in a tough SEC conference. Chicago could not pressure the QB last season, one of Jerry's strengths is his pass-rushing ability. Jerry's rare initial burst off the snap make him a great fit for Chicago and what they want to do on defense. Jerry is the drafts best penetrating prototypical three-technique defensive tackle. Also, Jerry makes plays behind the line having 14TFL in 07 which ranked 6th in the SEC, and 18TFL this season to rank first. I just think the Bears could use this type of player to help their defense, and Jerry could be one of the few rookies that could help out from day one much like Matt Forte did as a rookie. I realize Harris is under contract, but the knee doesn't seem to be getting better with him standing on the sideline during mini camp, that doesn't look good. Also, Chicago has moved Idonjie back outside to defensive end, and Marcus Harrison has been getting just as many reps at the nose as he has at the under tackle position. And like you brought up, Dusty Dvoracek can't go an intire season, will he even make the final cuts in Sept? I just think that is way to many question marks at the DT position, bringing in a player like Jerry could help fix, and improve the Bears situation. If Chicago were to bring in a player like Peria Jerry, they could move Harrison to nose tackle, and have a rotation of big [6-3 310lbs] Marcus Harrison and Anthony Adams. And then they would have Peria Jerry and Tommie Harris to keep the under tackle position more effective with two players manning it, this would also make Chicago's defense more effective which is important for a team like Chicago that relies so much on their defense. A rotation could also help prolong Tommie Harris's career. I still think it's gonna come down to either receiver Jeremy Maclin or defensive tackle Peria Jerry at #18 for Chicago, we'll see GO BEARS!!

I agree with Rich T, I would not retain Jason McKee, simply because we have other people on the roster that can do what he does on offense, and he is not a good blocker either. I would use Greg Olson, or Kellen Davis, especially Davis, who I would like to see alot more of this season, or even Desmond Clark, one of those players can do what Jason McKee does, maybe better. I could see the Bears taking P.Jerry at 18, because I am still skeptical of whether Tommie Harris will EVER be the player he was 3 years ago, I am more and more getting the feeling that he won`t be. I also can`t help but feel that either Macklin, or Nicks or Harvin, would be able to help us out, but I am more inclined to feel that the help would not be until the 2010 season. We need recievers that can get separation at the line of scrimmage, I`m not sure if any of these rookies will give us that right away. I don`t know if we can fix the receiver problem rght away, but bringing in a veteran for a year or two would help.

Good Points Kevin Armstead. I'm personally hoping we can trade down and get the extra pick, and add a player like Ziggy Hood. Harrision looks promising, and with the nose demanding double teams, a rotation with Harrison and Adams makes sense.

Personally I like the formula, a la the 07 Giants when they won the superbowl before Umenura busted his knee, and Strahan retired. Their o-line and d-line rotation can dominate when healthy. Now if the Bears can get a rotation w/Hood and Harris, along w/Marinelli getting the most out of our underachieving ends(the past 2 years) and get them into '05/'06 form, then that should get us steps closer to being a dominating defense once again. It all starts up front for us.

As for the 2nd round pick, I'm glad the bears are trying out many receivers. Maybe one of them will drop to us, Robiskie/Britt/Masoquai/etc. by the time our pick comes up. An extra second could then net us Loadholdt, who could be groomed behind Shaffer to man the RT position. We get younger/stronger on the o-line: more time for Orton to throw/more running lanes for Forte. Go Bears.

Kevin, Britt looks to be a first rounder after his really good Pro Day. Nicks however is dropping. I doubt Jerry and the Bears even meet, do have any Idea how much money would be tied up in the DT position. They brought in Rod to fix the line, they have the guys there they want to start for good or for bad. Jerry is also not the calibur of player Harris was when he came out. The only reason the Bears got Harris is because he was an injury concern and he dropped. I know you like to ignore guys with injury isses like Williams, Bradley, Harris, Harrison, but most of the times those injury issues become a problem.

I think Shaffer means little at this point, the guy is making less than Omiyale and may be insurance for a rookie OT they draft. They did need two OT's they got one a Vet which they needed. The Bears also said they brought him in to compete for a job at OT. Compete with who, Omiyale is going back to LG, so is he going to compete with himself?

I follow what your saying Kevin. The only difference between Forte, Harrison and Peria Jerry would be the round of selection.

To miss on a 2'nd rounder is really bad, to miss on a 3'rd rounder is still bad but you roll with the punces, BUT, to miss on yet another 1'st rounder would be horrendous and Angelo would get lit up like a roman candle by the fans and the media...

Go Bears !!

Thanks to all for the many good thoughts on the draft. To introduce another dimension to the discussion, what do you make of Lovie's statement that Michael Vick deserves to be treated as any other person who has served their time (Martha Stewart, he cites as an example)? Vick, if he has turned the corner, could look good in a Bears uniform!

Now that the Bears put a band-aid on the RT position, watch out for a Robert Ayers, DE out of Tennessee with the 18th pick. I think its a little high for him but he has been climbing up draft boards. Ogunleye and Anderson are on the last years of their contracts, and the way they both played last year, they may be gone.

Steve I like Ayers, I think he will be a good LDE, not to mention Tennessee Dline guys tend to be good.

Eric he did serve his time but if your going to look at him you need to look past the name and the media hype. He was suppose to be the best QB ever, and the Media and ESPN have tried to build him up for years. But just as a QB what has he done? He is a great scrambler and has a strong arm. But he has never thrown for 3000 yards, his passer rating is 75, he does not really fit the offense, the Bears really want a pocket passer, but because there offense was not that good they had to rely on play action last year but that is not really there game.

They could go more spread offense, Turner used that in college. and that could help Vick. But the guy has never been that accurate comp% is 53, outside of the running he puts up numbers similar to Orton in fact Orton put up better numbers than him last year and thats not actually a good thing. Plus think about his WR White. With Vick he was a 500 yard reciver for two years and looked like a first round bust. Without him he is a 1300 yard reciever, Jenkins was also better after he left. He has not played in the NFL in 2 years, he is a known locker room cancer, and he has shown he has no problem drowning a defensless puppy with his bare hands. That puppy must have struggled a lot before it slowly drowned to death. Do you really want a guy like that on the Bears?

1-21-Percy Harvin WR moving back to 21 and getting a 3rd for our 4th(85 for 119)
2-49-Pat White QB/WR
3-84-Troy Kropog OT Tupou if needed
3-85-Phillip Hunt DE
3-99-Asher Allen CB/Ramses Barden (for you bubs)
5-154-Phil Trautwein OT Florida
6-190-Willie VanDeSteeg DE Minnesota 10.5 sacks last year
7-246-Greg Isdaner G WV
7-251- Jovorskie Lane FB Texas A&M 285 lbs

I saw a comment about using melton in short yardage. Do not confuse big running back with bruising running back. He rarely converted a short yardage situation. He's a very talented end, but he's not a running back for anyone.

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on March 26, 2009 6:29 AM.

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