We have a better sense of the 2014 Bears following a week of free agency, as well as what the Bears' needs may be for the draft. Hub takes your questions this week on what the Bears' direction will be going forward. Remember to tweet any Bears questions to @Hub_Arkush and @bears_insider.
From @BBobysud588: If you're drafting a safety and all options are available, do you take [Ha Ha] Clinton-Dix or Calvin Pryor?
Honestly, I've leaned toward Clinton-Dix from the beginning, but the majority of the people I respect seem to lean toward Pryor. I think it 's fair to say Pryor seems a safer bet as in-the-box, knock-your-jock-off type of run stuffer while Clinton-Dix is probably the more complete player, at least right now, and may be a safer bet in coverage. Force me to make a choice and I'd take the chance on Pryor.
From @jvande_102: Have the Bears done enough (so far) to help themselves at safety? Talent still seems lacking...
No, they haven't done enough yet for exactly the reason you suggest. Ryan Mundy and Danny McCray are career backups, and M.D. Jennings was given a starting job in Green Bay and disappointed terribly. They may or may not be upgades over Major Wright and Chris Conte, but they'll have to play well above anything they've done to date to improve the Bears at the position and be good enough.
From @jimniezgoda: If you were picking for the Bears at 14 tomorrow, who would you take?
Obviously it depends on who's available, and there's no way to know for sure right know, but I suspect Calvin Pryor, Stephon Tuitt, Justin Gilbert and Eric Ebron could all be there and I'd be happy with any one of the four. Ebron may have the highest ceiling, and Pryor and Tuitt probably come with the most questions. Depending on who is actually there, I'd rank my choices today as Gilbert, Ebron, Pryor and Tuitt in that order. Based on the number of their own defensive linemen they've re-signed and the free agents they've brought in, I don't see them drafting one in the first round.
From @jimmyweld: Did you see anything from Cornelius Washington that would lead you to believe he can contribute this year?
No, I haven't seen anything. But a big part of that is because we literally didn't see him on the field all season long. Based on the couple reps he got early in the season and training camp, he hasn't shown anything to suggest he can play in the league. He's an all-world athlete, but I'm not sure he's a football player.
From @Ejrguzman2: Any word on a possible veteran quarterback to back up Cutler since [Jordan] Palmer has very little NFL game experience?
Palmer is going to be the Bears No. 2 QB this year, and based on what Marc Trestman and Matt Cavanaugh did with Josh McCown last year, there's no reason to assume he won't be fine. The bigger question is, will they draft a young quarterback with some potential to develop behind Cutler and Palmer.
From @BBueschel: Do you think the Bears would consider Kony Ealy if he is still available at 14?
I think they'd be foolish not to consider him, as he's either the second or third best prospect as a pure pass rushing, 4-3 defensive end along with Stephon Tuitt, and that's still one of the Bears' greatest needs, if not the greatest. The problem is I'm not sure he's one of the top 14 prospects in the draft. In fact, I'm not sure he's one of the top 20, so 14 could be a little high to take him.
From @JoeRingblum: Would (Anthony) Barr be a fit for the Bears if he is available? And your thought on (Ra'Shede) Hageman? Seems like (an) Emery-type guy, but low production.
Anthony Barr is the type of prospect you create a fit for if he's available to you but there is no way he'll still be on the board at 14. I like Hageman a lot, but I'm not sure if he's best suited to be a 4-3 defensive tackle or 3-4, five-technique defensive end. As far as being an Emery-type of guy, I'm really not sure yet what an Emery type of guy is. Certainly Shea McClellin and Kyle Long were totaly different kinds of prospects.
From @JK6968: Do you think it's possible Corey Wootton re-signs when he recovers from surgery? I haven't heard his name much yet.
It appears to me that Wootton is gone for good. I'm not saying that's what I'd do, I'm saying it certainly looks like that's what the Bears have decided based on all the other signings they've already made.