An 8-8 team that benefitted from an expanded playoff format, the Chicago Bears put together an abysmal showing against the Saints on Sunday. The game was a special broadcast on Nickelodeon, and I feel bad for the numerous children that watched this game over their usually scheduled programming. Instead of witnessing the complex storylines befalling a group of search and rescue dogs on Paw Patrol, they were subjected to Mitchell Trubisky—not even the dogs can rescue you from that.
The Bears had many years of modest stability with Jay Cutler, but since his departure from the Windy City, the Bears have been Trubisky’s team, and that has been a disaster. Although he has ‘led’ them to two playoff appearances in four seasons, he is equally responsible for ‘leading’ the Bears to quick playoff exits. Chicago lost 16-15 to the Eagles during the 2018-19 postseason. This year, Chicago lost 21-9 to the Saints. Their defense has been great, but the weakest link has obviously been at quarterback.
With their defense looking to remain a strength in 2021, the time for change is now in Chicago... right?
Today’s Question of the Day is:
What will the Bears do at quarterback?
My answer: I think they will sign a free agent to be their starter.
Trubisky is a free agent, and while Chicago snuck into the playoffs, it came off the back of three poor opponents: the 4-12 Texans, the 7-9 Vikings, and the 1-15 Jaguars. They would be foolish to re-sign him to anything more than a backup-level contract. Even then, having him on the team will only create controversy should whomever they bring in struggle.
The draft is likely out of the question. Chicago will be picking 20th, and while it is a deep draft at quarterback, they figure to miss out on the top prospects. Would they reach for a prospect like Mac Jones or Kyle Trask? Perhaps.
For a team on the fringe of competing, I think they will go after a free agent. Even an average quarterback could be enough to tip the scales, and having a known quantity could be beneficial to a quick turnaround.
There could be a large shakeup at the quarterback position around the league, and Chicago could benefit. Dak Prescott is the free agent prize, but Dallas would be dumb to let him walk. Jameis Winston might be upset in New Orleans after being passed over for Taysom Hill, and Chicago could be a chance to reclaim a starting role. Jacoby Brissett might leave Indianapolis. Cam Newton might be a one-and-done in New England. Who knows, maybe Taylor Heinicke showed enough to get a shot. Dwayne Haskins still has plenty of potential as a current free agent. These aren’t the sexiest names out there, but I don’t think Chicago would be wise to shell out for a trade.
Matthew Stafford is probably off limits, so that would leave the likes of Matt Ryan, Deshaun Watson, Carson Wentz, Sam Darnold, Teddy Bridgewater and Alex Smith as trade targets. While many of those names are improvements over Trubisky and most of the free agents, the cost to acquire them could be a tad too much for Chicago. I think signing a free agent is a better direction to take.
Of course, as a Lions fan, I wouldn’t mind if they kept Trubisky. How about a $100 million contract eh?