Most of what’s being written and said about what the Bears will do in the NFL Draft revolves around their third overall pick—their highest selection since they also chose third in 1972.
But the Bears also have an opportunity to land another very good player in the second round with the 36th overall pick. Here are nine notable players who have been chosen in that spot:
1988: Tackle Jumbo Elliott (Giants)
Elliott played 14 seasons with the Giants and Jets, appearing in 197 games with 156 starts. He was a key starter on the Giants’ team that won Super Bowl XXV and was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1993. Elliott even caught a touchdown pass in a memorable Monday night game, helping the Giants turn a 30-7 fourth-quarter deficit into a 40-37 overtime win over the Dolphins.
1992: Receiver Jimmy Smith (Cowboys)
Injuries and illness kept Smith from establishing himself with the Cowboys, but he signed with the expansion Jacksonville Jaguars in 1995 and became a star. Smith was voted to five straight Pro Bowls and retired in 2006 as the franchise’s all-time leading receiver with 862 yards for 12,287 yards and 67 TDs, having led the Jaguars in receiving every season from 1996-2005.
1994: Center Kevin Mawae (Seahawks)
Mawae, who served as an offensive assistant coach with the Bears last season, played 16 NFL seasons with the Seahawks (1994-97), Jets (1998-2005) and Titans (2006-09), appearing in 241 games with 238 starts. He was voted to eight Pro Bowls, was a seven-time first-team All-Pro and was named to the NFL All-Decade Team for the 2000s.
1996: Safety Lawyer Milloy (Patriots)
Milloy was selected to four Pro Bowls in seven seasons with the Patriots and helped New England win Super Bowl XXXVI, breaking up three passes in a 20-17 win over the Rams. After leaving the Patriots, Milloy played for the Bills (2003-05), Falcons (2006-08) and Seahawks (2009-10). He appeared in 234 NFL games with 213 starts, recording 25 interceptions.
1997: Running back Tiki Barber (Giants)
Barber spent his entire 10-year NFL career with the Giants, becoming the franchise’s all-time leading rusher with 10,449 yards. He was voted to three Pro Bowls and inducted into the Giants’ Ring of Honor. Originally projected as a third-down back, Barber developed into a complete back and became an integral part of the Giants offense.
2001: Receiver Chad Johnson (Bengals)
“Ochocinco” was voted to six Pro Bowls and was a four-time first-team All-Pro during 10 seasons with the Bengals. He remains the franchise’s all-time leading receiver with 751 catches, 10,783 yards and 66 touchdowns. Johnson was traded to the Patriots in 2011 and capped his NFL career by playing in New England’s loss to the Giants in Super Bowl XLVI.
2008: Receiver Jordy Nelson (Packers)
One of the NFL’s most productive receivers, Nelson has topped 1,000 yards in three straight and four of his last five seasons with 1,263 yards in 1011, 1,314 in 2013, 1,519 in 2014 and 1,257 in 2016. (He missed the entire 2015 campaign with a torn ACL.) Nelson caught 98 passes with 13 touchdowns in 2014 and 97 passes with 14 TDs in 2016 after returning from his injury.
2011: Quarterback Colin Kaepernick (49ers)
Kaepernick remains unemployed, but he made a huge impact early in his career, leading the 49ers to the Super Bowl in 2012. Earlier that season, he made his first NFL start against the Bears, passing for two TDs in a 32-7 win. In his first postseason start, he set a league record for most rushing yards by a quarterback with 181 in a 45-31 victory over the Packers.
2014: Quarterback Derek Carr (Raiders)
Carr has been selected to the Pro Bowl each of the past two seasons. He threw for 3,987 yards with 32 touchdowns, 13 interceptions and a 91.1 passer rating in 2015. Carr continued to emerge last season—passing for 3,937 yards with 28 TDs, six interceptions and a 96.7 rating—before breaking his fibula in a Week 16 win over the Colts.