Prior to the Chicago Bears trading for Montez Sweat, the idea of trading for Chase Young circulated through the fanbase like wildfire.
And in full transparency, I was not on board with trading for Young at all— at the time. But, with rumors of the Chicago Bears being linked to Chase Young in free agency, that's a completely different story.
Montez Sweat has cemented himself as the true alpha of the defensive line, so the Bears wouldn't need to rely on Chase Young to be the prospect he was coming out of Ohio State. He'd be reunited with a former teammate, and he'd be on a young (bah dum tss) defense who could be heading into their competitive window.
After being traded to the 49ers, Young wasn't offered an extension of his contract, which means he'll be up for grabs this free agency cycle. Sure, his position in San Francisco is nice; but with a projected 2024 cap space total of $1,365,837, there's a strong possibility that Chase Young is a cap casualty.
The Chicago Bears should try to sign Chase Young at a discount
The Chicago Bears, however, have a projected 2024 cap space total of $49,132,701. So, you know, a casual $48 million more than the 49ers. As far as money goes, the Bears are a seemingly more intriguing option.
Now, what the 49ers lack in available money, they have in talent littered across their entire roster. The Chicago Bears don't necessarily have that talent, yet. However, with the defense being a focal point of Ryan Poles' first two drafts, there's an expectation that the defense is going to blossom soon.
Not that I'm a defensive coordinator, but bringing in a guy like Chase Young could really help a younger defense looking for some juice. And at a projected market value of approximately $13 million, the risk isn't nearly as high.
If the Chicago Bears were able to get him for an average salary of, say, $11 million, he'd be getting paid slightly more than Yannick Ngakoue. Even if he got the $13 million per year, that's on-pace with guys like Cameron Jordan, John Franklin-Meyers, and Matt Judon.
And I'll be the brave one to say Chase Young is worth as much, if not more than those players.
Young's biggest risk is his health, and with the constant stories that come out of the Washington Commanders' franchise on how players are treated — especially when it comes to medical — there's no major mystery as to why Chase Young might've struggled to get back to 100% after tearing his ACL in 2021.
And for the right price, there's reason to believe why Ryan Poles would want to reunite Chase Young with Montez Sweat to create a ferocious defensive line.