The Bears tight end position has been manned almost exclusively by Zach Miller over the past couple seasons with little to no depth. When he went down with an injury a few games ago, the Bears were left stuck with no solid pass catching replacement. They brought in Daniel Brown and he has been a nice addition but he is not a number one tight end.
Chicago hasn’t had a true number one tight end since they let Martellus Bennet go to the New England Patriots. They need someone like him who can not only catch but block. A “complete” tight end. That would go a long way towards helping improve the offense. With such a critical need, could they turn to free agency to fill it?
There will be several good tight ends available in free agency depending on who re-signs with their current team. I have gone through the list and came up with these possibilities:
Jermaine Gresham-Arizona Cardinals
Jacob Tamme-Atlanta Falcons
Garrett Graham-Denver Broncos
Jared Cook-Green Bay Packers
Jordan Cameron-Miami Dolphins
Larry Donnell-New York Giants
Cameron Brate-Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Anthony Fasano-Tennessee Titans
Some of these guys are older and may retire or not be worth looking at because they could be done in a year or two. But they are still better than most of what the Bears have available, currently, on their roster.
One guy that is interesting is Cameron Brate. We saw him play against the Bears the Tampa Bay Buccaneers played the Bears. If you recall, he had a good game. He can block and catch so perhaps he is someone the Bears should look at. Larry Donnell had a nice season a couple years ago, and in the right spot, could get some of that magic back. There are all kinds of possibilities.
There is one player that the Bears will have as a free agent this offseason if they choose not to re-sign him. Logan Paulsen will be out of a contract and right now, it’s hard to predict what the Bears might want to do with him. Should they bring him back? He is a nice blocker but if Chicago brings in anyone else, he may go to the back of the line.
The free agency class for tight ends this year is decent. The Bears need to take advantage of this and grab some talent to help improve this position.