Three weeks separate the Chicago Bears and their final big hurdle of the 2021 offseason. It’s not too much of an exaggeration that this could be the most important draft of GM Ryan Pace’s career. Given the lack of any significant upgrades to the roster in free agency last month, there is mounting pressure to deliver a strong performance in Cleveland. If he fails? Then it’s possible he and the entire coaching staff lose their jobs.
Normally in times like this, Pace tends to go by instinct. One thing about his instinct over the years? It’s not normal compared to other GMs. Where others may become cautious about the moves they make, Pace gets aggressive. He isn’t afraid to take bold swings when he recognizes a problem with his roster. This is why nobody would be shocked if the Bears decided to make a splash early in the draft.
They are certainly doing research on that subject.
A source informed me that Pace has placed a number of phone calls with teams picking higher up the board. Particularly in the top 10. One he had an extensive conversation with was the Denver Broncos who select at #9 overall. This does make sense. Benjamin Allbright is a Broncos insider and he has heavily alluded to the possibility that Denver could be looking to move down. Their new GM George Paton is a disciple of Vikings GM Rick Spielman who has a long track record of moving down and collecting picks.
What would the price look like if the Bears did this? The closest comparison comes from back in 1996. That year the Houston Oilers gave #9 to the Oakland Raiders for #17 along with 2nd and 4th round picks. Considering the Bears would be moving from #20? One can guess the price tag will be a bit higher. Especially if a quarterback is involved. That seems like the only logical reason Pace would make such a jump.
Chicago Bears aren’t done at quarterback yet
Both Pace and head coach Matt Nagy have said the situation on their roster warrants the addition of a young quarterback. Andy Dalton may be the starter but he’s only here on a one-year deal. Nick Foles is the backup and has been surrounded by trade rumors for months. They have no young, long-term possibilities on the depth chart. That should be taken as a sign they’re going to add one at some point.
Could it be in the 1st round? There have been rumblings about what the Chicago Bears’ plan of action is. Previous sources indicated they’ve done extensive research on all the projected Day 2 quarterbacks. Those who should go in the 2nd or 3rd rounds. However, there is also a genuine belief that one of the top five quarterbacks could end up falling. Justin Fields of Ohio State being one of them.
This is serious. Whether it actually happens?
That depends on how the board falls. The Bears aren’t going to lock themselves into any trade unless the player they specifically want ends up falling. What they’re doing right now is gauging the likely price tags they’d be willing to stomach. Denver does seem to make the most sense. It’s high enough to have a good chance of getting said player without being an astronomical cost.