Corey Wootton the Bears' latest injury risk

The Chicago Bears aren’t afraid to take chances on players with injury concerns in the NFL draft, including 2004 first-round pick Tommie Harris and 2008 first-round pick Chris Williams. So it’s no surprise that they pulled the trigger on Northwestern defensive end Corey Wootton in the fourth round of this year’s draft, despite concerns about his health.

Still, Mike Mulligan of the Chicago Sun-Times reports that at least three NFL teams removed Wootton from their draft boards because of injury issues.

”You will get something from the guy, but maybe his career will be limited,” one source on an NFL team told Mulligan. “We had the same grade on Williams, and he wound up needing surgery. We had a medical on Tommie Harris, too, and [the Bears] probably won with that one.”

Wootton suffered a neck injury as a freshman at Northwestern and ended up redshirting that season. He also suffered a torn ACL in the 2008 Alamo Bowl. According to Mulligan, the three teams that dropped Wootton from their boards did so because of the neck injury, but the Bears were more concerned about the knee.

9 responses to “Corey Wootton the Bears' latest injury risk

  1. The guy had a first round grade offset by his injury risk. I’d say the fourth round is exactly where a player like this should be taken. You guys just can’t get past your Bears hate and admit that it was a decent pick. It was a value pick.

  2. After the first three rounds teams are sort of looking in the bargin bin or “scratch and dent” section. You are rarely going to find someone with potential to contribute soon on the D-Line that doesn’t have size or medical concerns. When you’ve pissed away all your high picks this is the only chance you’ve got.

  3. No one hates the Bears…you have to be good to be hated and the Bears are not that.

  4. At that point allt he draft “experts” were calling him the best player available. I think a lot of teams had at least a third round grade on him. If it wasn’t the Bears, he would’ve been taken very soon after.
    If it really was the neck injury they were concerned about maybe the 2008 season is evidence that he could recover. The ACL wasn’t 100% all last season but he performed decently down the stretch. Probably won’t play much this year, at least not at first. His knee should be good to go once the Bears start using him.
    I really liked what he brought to NU’s defense, even last year. Under Marinelli, I think Wootten has a good chance to elevate his game to the next level and contribute to that line for years to come. At the very least, he could be an adequate replacement for Alex Brown.

  5. “It was a value pick”
    Come on, we all know the only team that gets value picks is the Patriots, whether it’s in an injury prone guy, or a trouble-maker they get.
    They draft a guy who took off his freaking helmet and swung it players during a brawl, value pick baby.

  6. @ChicagoJo “I think a lot of teams had at least a third round grade on him”
    If a lot of teams had at least a 3rd round grade on him, then he would have gone at least by the 3rd round.
    Just saying.

  7. Dropped him from their draft boards completely? Gee, that’s a little harsh. Couldn’t they simply have downgraded him to a 7th rounder?
    I don’t know what NFL teams are looking for in rounds 3-7. The data shows the overwhelming majority of pro bowlers come from the 1st round and then some from the 2nd. Very few after that aside from special teamers.

  8. Every draft pick is a health risk, and its not like the Bears are any different than the rest of the NFL. They saw good value and pounced on a good talent. I like how you put Tommie Harris in there- he helped them get to a SB. Williams may have had surgery, but he’s the starting LT who’s very healthy now and showed great progress at the end of the season. Will you guys eat crow if Wootton has a successful rookie campaign? Doubt it, cause you Bear haters are infallible to criticism.

  9. I am just not seeing how anybody is hating on the Bears here. I am a Bears fan and you whiners are making the rest of us look bad. By the way you don’t have to be good to be hated. I hated the Packers during the years between Lombardi and Holmgren and they sucked during that span.

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