Chicago Bears: Why Cardinals extending D.J. Humphries is good news for Ryan Pace

Chicago Bears (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

The Arizona Cardinals extended their left tackle D.J. Humphries. Humphries was a name we mentioned in connection with the Chicago Bears, but the contract is actually good news for Ryan Pace.

The Chicago Bears are in need of offensive line help. Seeing one of the better free-agent options sign an extension before free agency starts is usually a bad thing for a team desperate to sign a legit starter. In this case, Ryan Pace should be pretty happy about the contract Arizona gave their starting left tackle D.J. Humphries.

The Cardinals extended Humphries with a three-year, $45 million dollars contract. The contract is guaranteed for $29 million and gives the Cardinals an out in the third year of the deal. The reason Ryan Pace should not feel sick to his stomach about one of the better free agent offensive linemen going off the market is that the price is essentially $15 million in AAV.

The Chicago Bears need more help on the inside than the outside. Finding a strong, solid right guard is more important than an offensive tackle in my opinion. We have been talking up Brandon Scherff and Joe Thuney this offseason. I have been anticipating that Scherff, who is the best offensive lineman free agent this season, to receive between $12 and $15 million in AAV. With the Humphries signing, Scherff should come in at nothing more than $12 million.

Scherff has been dealing with injuries the last few seasons and that should help drive his price down. Left tackles are more expensive than guards, but guards can really change the dynamic of an offensive line. Look at Quenton Nelson for the Indianapolis Colts for example. Scherff might not be Nelson, but he is not far off when healthy. I would like to see Pace lock Scherff up for between $10 and $12 million now. This also means Thuney should be in the $7 to $10 million range.

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Pace should be looking at this signing with a glass half full mentality and licking his chops for the chance to bring in one of these two top guards this offseason. If he can secure one of them this team will improve drastically with just this one move.