Chicago Bears: 5 worst free agent signings by Ryan Pace

Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bears, Markus Wheaton
Chicago Bears (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

Markus Wheaton

Wow. Do you even remember Markus Wheaton being on the roster? I would not blame you if you do not remember him since he only caught three of his 17 targets in 2017. That is a 17 percent catch rate and he never scored a touchdown. Wheaton only played one season for the Chicago Bears before the team parted ways. This was not before he practically stole $5 million dollars from the team.

Wheaton was signed to a two-year, $11 million dollar contract. $5 million of that was guaranteed. This means that Wheaton earned $1.67 million dollars per catch. He gained 51 yards for the Bears that year, which means he earned $89,039 per yard gained. From a production and salary standpoint, Wheaton might even be worse than any other player mentioned in this list.

Now, the contract was bad, but even Pace could not have predicted Wheaton would be this bad. He had two very strong seasons in Pittsburgh before being hurt in his last year with the Steelers. In 2014, Wheaton caught 53 of 86 targets for 644 yards and two touchdowns. He followed that up in 2015 with 44 balls for 749 yards and five touchdowns. Giving Wheaton a shot was not necessarily the problem but signing him to an $11 million dollars contract was way too much.

Wheaton did not last long and thank goodness Pace was able to turn the Bears 2017 wide receiver class around so quickly. He is still trying to do the same with the tight end position and unfortunately failing.