Chicago Sun-Times

Shoop compares UNC's Nicks to ex-Bears receiver

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Bears college scouting director Greg Gabriel was one of an estimated 75 NFL people at North Carolina's pro day on Tuesday.

He got to visit with Tar Heels offensive coordinator John Shoop briefly. The Bears have interest in wide receiver Hakeem Nicks and have scheduled a private workout with him next week. Shoop checked in earlier today to talk about Nicks, who was a gamebreaker for the Tar Heels last season. Nicks averaged 18 yards per catch and scored 12 touchdowns.

Our Q&A:

HOW DID NICKS DO AT PRO DAY?

Shoop: He did fine. All of our guys did fine. They're good players. Hakeem is a fine player and he reminds me a lot of Muhsin Muhammad. He's ultracompetitive. Gosh, what a great young man.

AS YOU WELL KNOW, ROOKIE RECEIVERS OFTEN STRUGGLE IN THE NFL. CAN NICKS MAKE AN IMPACT IN HIS FIRST YEAR?

Shoop: I have no doubt he can succeed as a rookie. He's a productive receiver and it's not a one-hit wonder. He's gotten better from the first year I was around him to the second year. He has tremendous run after the catch, he's very strong and he studies his craft. He wants to be good. I think he'll keep getting better and better.''

WHEN NFL PERSONNEL ASK YOU ABOUT HIM, WHAT QUESTIONS ARE THEY BRINGING UP?

Shoop: Just the normal things. Is he as good as he looks on tape? What are his work habits like? Does he understand the game? The answer is he is as good as he looks on tape, he has great work habits and the guy totally gets football. He's a good young man and we're all rooting for him.

DID YOU SPEAK WITH GABRIEL ABOUT NICKS?

Shoop: Informally. I sure saw Greg down here and we talked. It seems over the past month, myself or coach [Butch] Davis or [wide receivers] coach [Charlie] Williams, someone on our staff, has spoken to every single team about him.

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8 Comments

A compliment from such a distinguished source. I always hold a guy who gets bounced from the NFL in consecutive seasons in high regard. And lets not forget odius offensive coaching style. Shoop gives Nicks his approval, what does that mean? Nicks can run a 3 yard slant? Woo Hoo!

Yeah, cuz Shoop knows talent when he sees it, right? ;) lol...

Wait, so he reminds him of a WR who can only run 2 routes (Skinny post, and a 9 yard stop), throws his QB under the bus every time he doesn't get the ball, and can't maintain focus well enough to catch the ball on 3rd down????Sounds like a winner to me...

In all seriousness, Nicks is the guy I like if Maclin is gone by the time we draft. He has Reggie Wayne-type ability, not Mushin Muhammed ability. Not a speed guy, but runs good routes, has great hands, and does his job. I wonder whether Nicks will be available in round 2, because now we will need to draft Britton at 18, unless we are comfortable with Loadholt at 49 (barring another trade back by Jerry). I don't see Maclin getting past 15, but then again I did not expect the first WR to be drafted in round 2 last year....

Ah yes, John Shoop ... the only NFL offensive coordinator in history who makes Terry Shea look competent.

Joe Nicks should be there in round 2, but you can never tell with the draft all it takes is one team to reach for a player and then you start a run at that position. I don't think Loadholt makes it to 49, but even if Nicks doesn't either there is plenty to be had at the WR position this year. Robiskie, Bey, Britt, and Harvin are all going to be in the second round. I think the Bears will have a legit shot at Britt, Nicks, Robiskie in round two, I think Bey is all but a Raider. No more than 3 recievers are going in the first round this year. Last year not a single reciever went in the first round. Britton and Britt sounds good to me though. You know the Bears really screwed up by not having a single developmental OT on the team. Thats what happens when you stop gap, you have no prospects at a position.

Creighton wrote:
"You know the Bears really screwed up by not having a single developmental OT on the team. Thats what happens when you stop gap, you have no prospects at a position."

So, Williams and Balogh are established OTs? Or are they not OTs at all?

I don't deny that the Bears are short a OT but your comment is factually inaccurate.


Balogh is not developmental he is strictly a practice sqade guy and was just demoted again, thank you very much. If you want to develop a guy you don't leave him on the practice squad his entire career, in fact you usually don't send him there. You do know teams actually do draft player for the practice squad. Warm bodies.

Williams is not developmental either, he was drafted to be a starter day 1 in fact the Bears said so. He was not a guy who has been on the team a couple years as a backup spot starter and he was never meant to be.

You can look at Omiyale and say he was a developmental player, but the Bears didn't develop him and he wasn't on the team last year. But why do you think they went and got him? Hester is a guy you would consider as developmental, Bennett, Anderson, Steltz, Berrian was, See those are guys there trying to develop or developed to fill a need. Balogh has never been cosidered anything but cannon fodder and Williams was a starter day one, he just happened to get hurt. When he went down who played LT? Was it not Stop Gap John St. Clair? And who was backing up St. CLair and Tait? Why I believe they brought back stop gap Fred Miller. In fact often when a team drafts a developmental player they actually come out and say we drafted this guy to develop him. See how that works now.

Maybe you didn't know but most nfl teams will draft guys in the mid rounds and develop them over a couple of years. Guys who they think can start down the line but need work, not first round picks who are expected to go day one or undrafted FA who are warm bodies on the practice squad 99% of the time. Like you wouldn't call Tommie Harris a developmental player when the Bears drafted him. Not saying all first round picks are expected to start day one but most are. Every now and then you get an Urlacher who was actually developed, or you get a Matt Ryan who was ready to go day one. And while all players develop to some extent, some are developmental projects from day one and others are starters.

Or did you not know that?

Why do you think that Miller was put back on the team last year, because they had no developmental prospects to plug in if anyone got hurt. Maybe I could write a book for you, "Football for Dummies"

Then again MD I don't know why I should explain this too you as your football IQ is one of the worst I have ever seen and you don't absorb anything. Or did you forget the beating I threw you last year when you claimed Buzain and Okowo would be starters in 08 and that I was an idiot for saying they wouldn't make the team. Or when you claimed Angelo is the best GM in footabll and has a great draft record.

Don't start nothing, won't nothing.

Shoop said "He has tremendous run after the catch."

He better when your offensive philosophy calls for throwing the ball within five yards (either direction) of the line of scrimmage.

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on March 17, 2009 10:16 PM.

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