Bears take Cal safety Elijah Hicks in Round 7

Elijah Hicks, a safety from Cal, became the Bears’ second-to-last draft pick Saturday. They chose him with Pick 254 in Round 7, the first in a set of back-to-back picks acquired via trade with the Chargers.

The 5-11, 203-pound 22-year-old spent his first three years with the Golden Bears at cornerback before moving to safety in 2020. He stayed there in 2021, taking advantage of the coronavirus eligibility year. Four of his five career interceptions came at safety, including three last year. He had two passes defensed in each of his past two years.

He becomes the third recent Pac-12 graduate in the Bears’ defensive backfield, joining Utah’s Jaylon Johnson, one of the team’s best players, and Washington’s Kyler Gordon, who was drafted in the second round Friday night.

Bears general manager Ryan Poles started the day with three picks over three rounds and, through a series of trades, finished with eight.

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