Former Oregon inside linebacker Kiko Alonso paid a pre-draft visit to the Chicago Bears on Tuesday, according to ESPN Chicago. Alonso has been a popular pre-draft riser this offseason. His skillset could make him a viable successor to Brian Urlacher.
Matthew Fairburn of SB Nation called Alonso one of the most underrated players at his position in the 2013 NFL Draft. Alonso possesses prototypical size for a middle linebacker at 6'3, 238 pounds, and has the versatility to play in a number of different schemes. His explosive first step made him a fixture behind the line of scrimmage in college, but he also proved to be an adept zone defender, intercepting four passes during his senior season.
Though some speculate that Alonso could go as high as the second round, he was expected to be a Day 3 selection after the college football season ended. He had several off-field problems in college, including a year-long suspension in 2010 due to a DUI arrest. Alonso tore his ACL the following spring, forcing him to miss even more time and add "injury concerns" to his list of potential NFL red flags.
Alonso turned in an outstanding senior season, however, racking up 81 tackles, 14 for loss, four interceptions and two forced fumbles. Teams may have some reservations, but that hasn't stopped them from taking a look at the linebacker. In addition to the Bears, Alonso has also visited or worked out with the New Orleans Saints, Atlanta Falcons and 11 other teams.