David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune reports that Cedric Benson didn’t cry on draft day because he was frustrated about the “unfair” evaluation process teams go through before they invest millions in a high draft choice. According to Haugh, he was crying because his agent already knew the Bears weren’t prepared to meet Benson’s contract demands, but they took him anyway.
If this is true, shame on Jerry Angelo. It was bad enough that Benson already had 2 arrests on his record along with a reputation for being petulan. But to know that along with a questionable character, Angelo took him knowing that the contract situation would only make matters worse shows even worse judgment.
In Angelo’s defense, the first round of the 2005 draft has proven to be a wasteland-more than half the picks have turned out to be busts, including #1 overall pick Alex Smith. One could argue that Angelo would have been safer trading down and perhaps picking one of the defensive beasts like Demarcus Ware or Shawne Merriman. But both of those guys were hybrid linebackers more suited to 3-4 alignments, and teams that run that scheme are exactly who took them.
Still, I hated the pick as much 30 seconds after it was made as I do now.
Also in today’s Tribune, Vaughn McClure breaks down veteran options at running back. I like the thought of Kevin Jones on a “prove you’re healthy” deal, which he may not take. But we will see.