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Updated: April 17, 2013 11:56PM
Don’t expect Bears general manager Phil Emery to take down that “For Sale” sign. The team’s No. 20 pick still can be had.
Emery made that abundantly clear Tuesday at Halas Hall.
“We’ve had a couple of teams approach us,” Emery said. “I approached a couple during the owners meetings. There are talks. They’re back and forth. They’re kicking things around. It doesn’t get serious until you get close to the pick.
“My experience is that you may get two or three about three or four spots before your pick and then you may get more at that pick, but it gets real serious when you’re on the clock. But, certainly, we’ve had discussions, and we’ll see how it goes. It depends on whether our player is at that spot and we feel like he has the value where we don’t want to move out of the pick, or whether their player is on that spot.”
Emery projects that there will be five or six players the team is comfortable with selecting at No. 20, but there will be a much shorter list when it comes to players he can’t pass on at that point.
Emery said he’s “not ruling out interest in any player in this draft at any position,” but he has a strong preference for players “who are not necessarily system- specific,” referencing 2012 first-rounder Shea McClellin.
“We want players that transcend schemes,” Emery said. “Those are the best players to get.”
The Bears have hosted some notable linebackers for predraft visits, and Emery acknowledged that Notre Dame’s Manti Te’o was one.
“I will tell you that I found Manti to be a very good person, a very squared-away guy,” Emery said. “I certainly enjoyed the meeting.”
It’s possible, though, that Te’o and other quality linebackers such as Kansas State’s Arthur Brown could be available several selections or more past No. 20. Other talented linebackers such as Rutgers’ Khaseem Greene also might be had in the second round.
That’s what Emery and Co. have to consider when teams blow up his phone on draft day. Emery only has five picks for this draft, while some teams such as the San Francisco 49ers have a bevy of selections.
Emery said the Bears would trade “as far back as we feel like we’re really getting a good deal.”
“If somebody is going to wow us, and I’ll just throw out an arbitrary number, at No. 34, and we feel like that’s going to bring tremendous value to us and help upgrade our club significantly, we’ll go there,” Emery said. “We’re not averse to any scenario as long as we see positive value out of it.”