Bears – Potential Free Agent Additions (Offense)

Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports /
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Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

Tight End

TE Owen Daniels, Broncos (6’3 | 245 | 4.76) – At 33 years old Daniels is nearing the end of his NFL career, but his two touchdowns in the AFC Championship game showed that Daniels still has a little juice left. He struggled for most of the 2015 season with injuries to both knees but still managed 46 catches for 517 yards and 5 receiving touchdowns.

Daniels’ bad knees have him contemplating retirement, but he proved last year that he can still be a valuable receiving option at tight end. Despite Daniel’s balky knees, he did manage to play all 16 games last season. Daniels has a knack for finding holes in zone coverage schemes and could be a viable safety-valve receiver.

He’s not much of a blocker which is probably what the Bears need more at the tight end position since they already have good receiving options at the position in Zach Miller and Rob Housler. Daniels does have more experience than any tight end on the Bears roster and would give the Bears and Jay Cutler a reliable mid-range option if either injury plagued tight ends Zach Miller or Rob Housler get hurt.

Daniels knees might not hold up all season, but his clutch hands, ability to get open, and veteran savvy could give the Bears a solid weapon at tight end at least for a part of the 2016 season.

TE Andrew Quarless (6’4 | 254 | 4.69) – Former 5th round pick out of Penn St who has been a solid blocker for the Packers over the last few seasons. After starting 21 games for the Packers between 2013-2014 and putting up respectable stats with 61 catches for 635 yards and 5 TDs, he only started 1 game last season due partly to an MCL injury, an off-season gun-related arrest, and partly due to the emergence of Richard Rodgers.

The Packers decided to let Quarless go this off-season but he’s only 27 years old and still a solid blocker with the ability to catch the ball when open. The Bears have some exciting receiving options in Zach Miller, Rob Housler, and rookie Ben Braunecker, but none of them are considered above-average blockers and the Bears could use a tight end who can be an asset in the run game.

With 34″ inch arms and 10 1/4″ hands, Qaurless has the size to be a third red-zone tackle if needed, a position which the Bears don’t really have much depth at. He doesn’t have the speed or elusiveness to be a receiving weapon in the seam, but Quarless can find holes against zone defenses and catch the ball when it hits him in the numbers.

Quarless isn’t going going to beat out Milller as the Bears #1 TE, but is most likely better as a blocker right now than Khari Lee, who is currently the Bears top blocking tight end option. Quarless is a solid run blocker who can catch balls thrown in his vicinity and is most likely an upgrade over Lee and the two tight ends the Bears signed as undrafted free agents.

Quarless would be an affordable signing as a depth tight end who will help the running game and give Cutler a big, reliable receiving option as a safety-valve if Housler can’t stay healthy or neither of the Bears rookie tight ends are ready to contribute.

In summary if I had to rank the offensive free agents options, here are my top picks:

1.) G Amini Silatolu

2.) WR Anquan Boldin

3.) G/T Louis Vazquez