Monday, July 8, 2024

Buzz Remains Loud For Reunion Between Chicago Bears And Key Vet

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The Chicago Bears look like a much better team than the one that finished 2023. They have a new quarterback, an overhauled wide receiver group, a dynamic running back, and a stable offensive line. Couple that with a defense that finished last year among the NFL’s best, and it is easy to understand the optimism for 2024. However, no roster is perfect. There are always at least one or two areas people get nervous about. For the Bears, most would agree that position is edge rusher.

Montez Sweat is a star. Having him is a significant boon for the defense. However, he’s still only one man. To make a defensive line truly capable, you need two who can affect the quarterback. As things stand, the Bears don’t have one. Hopes are high for Gervon Dexter, but he remains unproven. DeMarcus Walker is a solid, versatile player but is best known for his run defense. The team needs a genuine QB hunter, which explains why the whispers remain persistent about a reunion with a familiar face. Matt Holder of Bleacher Report is the latest to mention him.

Would he consider a second try?

Granted, Yannick Ngakoue is coming off a career-low four sacks in Chicago last season, that’s partially because he suffered an ankle injury that limited him to just 13 games. Also, Ngakoue was productive during his limited time playing with Sweat, bringing down the quarterback twice in five contests while the latter commanded the offense’s attention.

So, it might be worth seeing what the pairing can do with a full season together, especially since the Bears don’t need the nine-year-veteran to be an every-down defender with DeMarcus Walker serving as the starting defensive end…

…Chicago currently has over $21.5 million of cap space, per Over The Cap, to bring the sack artist back to the Windy City before the season gets underway.

The Chicago Bears must remain practical about this.

Yes, they drafted Austin Booker and have high hopes for him. As he grows into his body, the 5th round pick could morph into a legitimate sack artist. That said, he is probably a year away from reaching that point. Nobody else on the roster can get the quarterback off the edge with any regularity. Ngakoue is the only free agent left on the market with such a background who is still under 30. Last season didn’t go as anybody hoped. Still, he was starting to rev things up during the second half of the year before his ankle injury.

This time around, he’d have Sweat on the other side from the beginning. That means more one-on-one blocks. If he still has any juice left, Ngakoue should be able to rack up sacks at a much faster clip. This comes down to whether he’s interested in a reunion with the Chicago Bears. The veteran has a track record of changing teams a lot. He has said he would prefer to land somewhere beyond one season. This would be such an opportunity. Much depends on what kind of money he’s seeking. If it’s close to what he made last year ($10 million), that may not be possible.

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4 COMMENTS

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I dug Plank
I dug Plank
Jul 8, 2024 10:33 am

If he doesn’t perform he’ll be CUT 😂

jmscooby
Jul 8, 2024 7:08 am

…and playing for TCU.

I dug Plank
I dug Plank
Jul 8, 2024 6:32 am

Sign him on the cheap, nowhere near the 10 mil we gave him last year. If he performed any worse he’d be working for the CTU

jmscooby
Jul 8, 2024 6:01 am

I’d go back to San Diego. Then realize no one is there anymore, but I’d look into getting Khalil back even if I had to pay with a pick, I’d try to get them to eat some of his salary if at all possible. He’s a UFA after ’24, and there’s a new sheriff in town who will want his own players. This is one of those situations because we are making a SB run. We need to put Mahomes under duress and on a clock. If we weren’t contenders, hell no. We shouldn’t have traded for him the first… Read more »

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