It's no secret that the Chicago Bears pass rush has struggled to apply pressure to the quarterback in 2023. If they want to revamp their line, they should sign free-agent pass rusher Robert Quinn for a reunion.
After five games, the Bears have reeled in seven sacks with defensive end Yannick Ngakoue leading the way with two, per ESPN. Simply put, that's not getting the job in today's pass-happy NFL. If this trend continues, they'll finish in the bottom half of the league in sacks.
They need someone who can get to the quarterback on a consistent basis. Quinn just might be who they're looking for. I mean, it makes sense. The stud has 102 career sacks, per Pro Football Reference.
Quinn, a three-time Pro Bowler, remains a free agent after playing the final year of his contract out with the NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles. The seasoned veterans' best years were with the St. Louis Rams. In the 2013 season, he recorded 19 sacks and was a Defensive Player of the Year finalist. During his golden years with the Rams, Quinn was one of the best pass rushers in the league.
At 33 years old and with a lot of miles on his NFL career, the Bears could bring him in on a cheap one-year deal worth $1 million--just a little north of the league minimum.
Even though no NFL team wants to bring in a pass rusher in his mid-30s, Quinn offers some upside. He could provide a boost to team chemistry. This is something he's accustomed to accomplishing. He was a key glue guy and positive locker room presence for the 2022 Philadelphia Eagles, a team that lost the Super Bowl just last season. Despite not having the best stats, Quinn was still vital to the Eagles' success.
From Super Bowl appearances in Philadelphia to 2-14 seasons in St. Louis, Quinn has seen it all in the NFL. That experience could be valuable for the Bears, who are easily one of the youngest teams in the league. It's likely that Quinn would end up becoming a player-coach with the Bears. Even if he only sees 15-20 snaps a game as a rotational defensive lineman, the lessons he could teach the younger guys in practice would be valuable for the team's future. This would benefit him and the Bears.
A former Bear for three years, Quinn played for the Bears during their most recent playoff season in 2020. The following year, he logged 18.5 sacks--good enough for the Bears single-season franchise record, breaking Richard Dent's record. Now imagine him lining up opposite Ngakoue on a crucial third-down situation. He would make the entire defensive line better with his presence, power, and agility as a pass rusher.
Quinn is just two years removed from his record-breaking season. We've seen defensive ends like New Orleans Saints pass rusher Cameron Jordan play well into his 30s. Why can't Quinn do this? Signing him would be a cheap, quick fix for a glaring need on the roster.
If the Bears don't sign a veteran pass rusher during the 2023 season, they should seriously consider investing in the position in free agency and the draft.