The guys over at SB Nation just came out with the latest version of their 2011 NFL Mock Draft, and it provides a little bit of a surprise for the Bears. They (along with everyone else who makes Mock Drafts these days) have had the Bears taking an offensive lineman in the first round. But this week, they go to the other side of the trench with Oregon St. defensive tackle Stephen Paea. Here is their rationale.
This pick has been projected as offensive line-or-bust for the Bears for good reason: their line is pretty terrible. It's not their only need, however, and with all of the value gone, Paea as a replacement for Tommie Harris would be a sensible alternative.
I agree with them that the Bears shouldn't reach for a position of need if there aren't any prospects left on the board who represent good value. I'm sure they want to take an offensive lineman just as much as everyone wants them to, but it doesn't make any sense to take one if all the good ones are gone before they pick (which I believe I predicted weeks ago, mind you).
As for Paea, he's a good player but I'm not sure how good of a fit he is for the Bears. He is a space eater who might be a little bit more at home in a 3-4 than he would be in the Bears' defense. But even if he is just occupying blockers to free up the likes of Julius Peppers, that might be something that the Bears need.