While the Chicago Bears have backed off their free agency moves for now, most expect they will be active again soon. GM Ryan Poles has several spots to fill and plenty of issues to fix. Probably the most pressing is on the offensive and defensive lines. They badly need help at the edge rusher spots. Trevis Gipson and Dominique Robinson failed to generate much as a pair last season. While the draft is an obvious source Poles will dabble in, there is also a strong possibility he may go hunting for veteran help as well.
Insider Ari Meirov of The 33rd Team believes some notable veterans may soon be available on the trade market. Titans safety Kevin Byard, Broncos receiver Jerry Jeudy, and Bengals tackle Jonah Williams headline the list. One name mentioned also is Miami Dolphins’ defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah. He carries a hefty $17 million against the salary cap this season. The team is pressed for space at less than $4 million. They also only have four picks in this draft. Some believe the organization may look to unload Ogbah to get some breathing room and add to their inventory of selections.
The defensive end is 29 years old. He was outstanding in 2020 and 2021, racking up 18 sacks and 45 quarterback hits. Unfortunately, a torn triceps ended his 2022 campaign after nine games.
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Ryan Poles should be able to land Ogbah for cheap.
The fact last season was less productive and ended in injury means the Dolphins don’t have much leverage in negotiations. They will likely have to settle for a pick in the later rounds. We’re talking a 5th or 6th. Chicago can afford his contract. If anything, it would help them reach the cash floor for the upcoming season. They’re still $45 million away from that. Presuming things don’t work out, they can cut him in 2024 with only $4 million of dead money. There is also a personal connection.
Ogbah was a member of the Kansas City Chiefs’ 2019 Super Bowl championship team. He had 5.5 sacks, and 11 quarterback hits in only ten games that season. Ryan Poles knows what he can do for a defensive front. Maybe Ogbah would be willing to negotiate his contract down a bit to help facilitate a trade. It depends on what Miami wants to do. They may hang onto him in hopes he returns to form. On the other hand, he isn’t the best fit for Vic Fangio’s new 3-4 defense.
Something to keep a close eye on.