Krenzel added to QB mix

Krenzel added to QB mix

The Bears aren't looking to create a QB controversy, but they went into the draft with the intent to select a quarterback on day two. The Bears found Ohio State's Craig Krenzel too good to pass up in round five.

There were some doubts that the molecular genetics major didn't have the passion for the game and would prefer to pursue a medical career, but that seems to be far from the truth.

"My number one aspiration and dream to play football in the NFL," Krenzel said. "That dream is here and I have a chance to start on Thursday. Someday when I'm done playing football, hopefully it's not for a little while, I'll probably entertain the thought of going back to school, even if it's 10, 12, 15 years from now, which is when I'm hoping it is."

Krenzel may be the smartest guy on the football field, but there's no debating Rex Grossman is the Bears quarterback of the future.

However there is a place for Krenzel in Chicago. The 148th overall selection will be the third string quarterback behind Grossman and Jonathan Quinn, who signed with the Bears during the off-season.

At some point the Bears believe Krenzel has the ability to become a solid #2 QB and maybe more.

"I see him as a guy that's going to come in as a third and work his way up to a two and then if he's really good you're going to have to make decision after four years because he'll be a UFA (unrestricted free agent)," said Bears director of college scouting, Greg Gabriel.

Krenzel is an athletic quarterback, but is described by Gabriel as a "streaky" passer. He completed just 56.8% of his attempts. He had 28 touchdown passes to 21 interceptions and threw for 4,493 yards mostly during two years of holding a starting role.

While Krenzel's numbers at Ohio State don't jump off the page, the Buckeye offense isn't exactly a quarterback friendly system.

"They play in a very conservative offense there, its not really a pro style offense," Gabriel said. "They have quality receivers and running backs, but still they only throw when they have to throw and that's by design."

Gabriel admitted that Krenzel could be underdeveloped because he didn't run pro style offense in college. Still he has intangibles some of the other quarterbacks still on the board couldn't match. He helped the Buckeyes to the National Championship in 2003 and led several comeback victories throughout his career.

"He may not have some of the numbers that some of the quarterbacks did, but he's very efficient," said GM Jerry Angelo.

BACK TO THE DEFENSE
One slot before taking Krenzel in the fifth-round the Bears selected DE Claude Harriott (147th overall) from Pittsburgh. He's a speed rusher from the edge that had 9.5 sacks in his junior campaign, but an ankle injury dropped his production in 2003 and hurt his draft status.

"He was looked (as) one of the premier pas rushers going into this year. He had a high ankle sprain so his production went down. We're hoping we get the '02 Harriott," Gabriel said.

The Bears went into the draft with just three defensive ends that were likely to make the 53-man roster in Alex Brown, Michael Haynes and Joe Tafoya. Harriott not only has a great chance to make the roster, but with 4.7 forty speed could be a situational pass rusher.

The Bears traded their sixth-round pick to the Washington Redskins for FB Bryan Johnson.

In sticking with their draft strategy of going after players from the bigger college programs, the Bears wrapped up their draft in the seventh-round by selecting Miami CB Alfonso Marshall with the 215th overall choice.

During his tenure at Miami, Marshall started 15 games including 12 as a senior. He has three career interceptions and 19 pass break-ups. Marshall has been clocked in the 4.4-4.5 range, but at 6-foot and 187 pounds he's on the light side.

While Marshall has the chance to make the roster, it will most likely be as a fifth cornerback. Charles Tillman is obviously the team's top corner. Jerry Azumah and R.W. McQuarters will compete for the other starting role. The Bears also drafted Nathan Vasher in the fourth-round.

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