10 Takeaways from the Chicago Bears Khalil Mack trade
Chicago Bears Takeaway No. 4: Free agency options just opened up
Spinning off this last point, the Mack trade makes it more likely the Bears will sign a top-tier free agent wide receiver. The better the receiver they sign the better it is for Justin Fields’ development in the all-important transition from season one to season two.
While the new GM and coaching staff are adding multiple wide receivers this offseason they need to also pay attention to this. It would be best to get the ideal mix-and-match of wide receiver skill sets. The Chicago Bears need to add a wideout who is at least six feet tall, preferably taller who ideally has sub 4.5 speed. This would complement the 4.37 speed of Mooney who sits at 5’10”.
Complementing the combination of a tall, fast receiver and Mooney would preferably be the ideal slot receiver. The perfect fit is one who has quality route-running skills, exceptional run after the catch ability, and as always for pass targets, some real sticky fingers under any circumstances.
Christian Kirk appears to be the best fit for this profile in free agency who also does not have injury concerns. Then there is Allen Robinson. He has proven himself to be a very clutch receiver at all times in a variety of wide receiver roles but most especially he is clutch in the most critical moments of a game. You cannot put too high a value on what this means to an offense and a team as a whole.
As mentioned, Amari Cooper is also a possibility if he is released. If the Chicago Bears are deciding between Robinson and Cooper, this is something to consider. I am pretty sure Robinson has better hands than Cooper, but Cooper runs a 4.42, and Robinson’s fastest time has been clocked at 4.6. If the route running ability is there, I will typically take hands over speed. In this case, Robinson has a wicked double move that often gets him wide open so I would go with Robinson.
Whichever free agent wideout the Bears sign, this is how they will very likely handle his contract. The better free agent wideouts will likely land as a yearly average between $12 and $18 million per year. The Bears could take five million or so that counts towards 2022 and push the rest into going against the deep pockets of their 2023 cap space. As previously mentioned, this would be similar to what the Giants did with Kenny Golladay’s contract.
It is also possible with the influence of Luke Getsy as the Bears’ new offensive coordinator, he might push to have the Chicago Bears sign wideout free agent, Marquez Valdes-Scantling. Getsy was the Packers’ quarterbacks coach for three years. However, I prefer not to give Valdes-Scantling overpriced free agent money for these reasons. For one, his hands are not exactly dependable. He is also not good with contested catches and has never been a high-volume pass-catching option even with Aaron Rodgers as his quarterback.