On a day when the Chicago Bears landed their first free agent of the Ryan Poles era, former Chicago Bears had already found or were rumored to be close to finding new homes. Some of them were even rumored to be staying close, perhaps, too close for comfort in one case in particular.
Poles’ first move was a nod to Matt Eberflus and the defensive switch the Bears are set to undergo from a 3-4 back to a 4-3.
The Bears also have a new co-director of player personnel in Trey Koziol.
Former Chicago Bears, Potential Targets Find New Homes Quickly
What’s the Word
Former second-overall pick has landed in Pittsburgh. The expectation is that he will be the Steelers starting quarterback following Ben Roethlisberger’s retirement. For many, including Trubisky himself following a year backing up Josh Allen with the Buffalo Bills, this is a critical development. For him, it’s his shot to prove it was never him that was the problem here.
The Steelers are giving him a chance to at least be a serviceable bridge to their next franchise after signing him to a two-year deal.
For Bears fans, what Trubisky does is a distant second at best to what Justin Fields does this coming season. Many hoped that would mean an aggressive approach to upgrading the offensive line and wide receiving corps.
That wasn’t the case.
Instead, they plucked a new three-technique for Eberflus while their reported top wide receiving target in Christian Kirk fled the desert of Arizona for the Jacksonville Jaguars. The $84 million price tag is definitely banking on potential. Another potential target in DJ Chark signed with the division-rival Detroit Lions (which could become a theme).
The Bears still have a shot at the likes of a JuJu Smith-Schuster.
Their offensive line market has seen several interior linemen switch teams but not so much with the tackle class headlined by former New Orleans Saints stalwart, Terron Armstead.
Moving early to secure Ogunjobi’s services – at three years for up to $40 million with $26 million guaranteed – was a bit of a smoke signal. It seemed the Bears would be aggressive with their newfound cap space, they ended up being one of the more judicious participants.
“Pittsburgh is pretty close to home for me being from Cleveland. So that would be cool.” – Trubisky on The Adam Schefter Podcast last week
What’s to Come
Wide receiver Allen Robinson’s time in Chicago has all but come to an end despite neither side slamming the door on the possibility. The Bears certainly haven’t been public with any change in their course. Robinson has gone with a different approach liking a post suggesting the embattled pass-catcher join the Green Bay Packers.
Then came a report from NFL Network’s Tom Peliserro that the Kansas City Chiefs and Detroit Lions were among the teams interested in pursuing the former second-round pick.
Those are interesting destinations with the Lions being in the division, obviously. But also with former Bears head coach Matt Nagy in Kansas City and that relationship with Robinson being what it is.
Robinson isn’t the only Bears free agent that could be suiting up elsewhere in the division either.
There is a lot of smoke surrounding Akiem Hicks joining the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings have former Bears assistant Ed Donatell as their defensive coordinator. Hicks logged his two best seasons when Donatell was scheming the coverages behind him coaching the defensive backs.
The Bears have been linked to former Chiefs and Arizona Cardinals safety, Tyrann Mathieu given his ties to Poles.
It would certainly be an interesting move given the glaring needs on offense and the direction of the league. But the Bears do have the luxury of using their money to front-load some defensive contracts.
Former Bears, Potential Targets Land New Homes
There is a lot of time between now and the start of the season. The Bears will certainly add more pieces to the puzzle, likely, on the offensive side of the ball. It is tough to see so many familiar faces go, including Khalil Mack being traded to the Los Angeles Chargers. Danny Trevathan and Eddie Goldman will surely find homes soon as well.
While they won’t see Trubisky, they could see a few familiar faces a couple of times next season. But the Bears timeline isn’t to win free agency or even just the offseason. That would go a long way towards achieving the ultimate goal, though.
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