What are the Bears' free agent options after Chase Young signing?

Chicago Bears, Yannick Ngakoue
Chicago Bears, Yannick Ngakoue / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

After the Justin Fields trade, Keenan Allen acquisition and other free agent moves, the Chicago Bears look like they're going to be a pretty competitive team this coming season.

Assuming we see them select Caleb Williams no. 1 overall in the 2024 NFL Draft, these Bears might be a force to be reckoned with.

But, there are still some holes left to fill within the roster. One of Chicago's biggest needs remains on the defensive line, with the Bears needing another starting defensive end. Some thought signing free agent Chase Young and reuniting him with Montez Sweat could be the move, but on Monday night, Young signed with the New Orleans Saints.

Following the Young signing, the Bears still have some options out there in free agency if they want to add a pass rusher.

Top free agent pass rushers still available

Yannick Ngakoue
Emmanuel Ogbah
Carl Lawson
Randy Gregory
Romeo Okwara
Tyus Bowser
Derek Barnett
Bud Dupree
Jadeveon Clowney
Shaq Lawson
Justin Houston
William Gholston
Jordan Phillips
Charles Harris
Jerry Hughes
Mike Purcell
Rasheem Green
Dawuane Smoot
Markus Golden

Of course, a couple of those names are familiar to Bears fans and the locker room. Last year, the Bears brought in Yannick Ngakoue right before the start of the regular season. An experienced pass rusher, Ngakoue went on to have his worst season yet, unfortunately.

Prior to the 2023 campaign, Ngakoue hadn't finished a year below 8.0 sacks, but last season saw him tally just 4.0 all season. Maybe it was an anomaly, and maybe playng a full season opposite Montez Sweat could change things for him.

Rasheem Green is also an in-house free agent for the Bears. He played 36 percent of snaps last year as a rotational player and notched just 2.0 sacks on the season.

Whatever route the Bears go at defensive end, they need to ensure they get at least one more capable talent to start alongside Sweat. The options in free agency are dwindling, so the Bears might end up going the route of the draft. Many would like to see Chicago trade back from pick no. 9, acquire additional capital and then use their later first-round pick on an edge rusher.

The draft is pretty well stocked with first-round pass rush talent and we could see four or five names go on Day 1. If the Bears ended up with a first-round talent at the position, that should take care of the bigger hole at that spot.