Sunday, June 16, 2024

Ryan Poles’ Next Extension Priority For Bears Is A Slight Surprise


The Chicago Bears resolved any major contract extension issues they had going into this off-season. Montez Sweat got his new deal shortly after the Bears traded for him. Then, GM Ryan Poles fulfilled his promise by securing All-Pro cornerback Jaylon Johnson to a massive contract as well. As things stand, Keenan Allen is the only player with a notable situation to monitor. The six-time Pro Bowler is a free agent in 2025 and had hoped to land an extension in Los Angeles before they traded him. Both sides seem open to a long-term partnership, but it was made pretty clear no such discussions will happen before the season.

That isn’t a surprise. Allen turns 32 this year. He missed multiple games last season with injuries. The Bears want to see how he does this season. If he plays at his customary level and stays relatively healthy, they will approach him about an extension at some point. However, another name may sit at the top of Poles’ priority list. It isn’t who fans would immediately think of. According to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune, the name to watch is D.J. Moore.

I don’t envision general manager Ryan Poles rushing into anything with Allen, especially with Rome Odunze on board. Jenkins has a lot to prove this season, and that could be a really good thing for him if he maximizes his opportunities, considering how the market for interior linemen has taken off.

The next veteran contract could be for wide receiver DJ Moore. That’s not so much a prediction as it is a little something to look out for. Moore is under contract through 2025, but my guess is the Bears at least would be interested in entertaining where things stand beyond that. It always takes two parties to be interested in getting something done, but I could envision Moore being paid before Jenkins and certainly before Allen — if Allen is extended.

This move by Ryan Poles isn’t entirely surprising.

He is big on rewarding players for great seasons. Moore just had the best of his career, topping 1300 yards. He is only 27 years old and is under contract through 2025. It makes sense the Bears would want to get negotiations started on an extension. For one, Moore has earned it. For another, the longer they wait, the more the price is likely to go up. Wide receiver contracts get more expensive every year. Smart teams work to get their top players locked down before the market explodes again.

It will be interesting to see if Moore is open to getting an extension done now or if he wants to wait. He may wish to stack another great year, giving himself increased leverage in negotiations. On the other hand, there is a chance the more crowded Bears receiving room with Allen and Rome Odunze could eat into his target share. Inking a new deal now might be in his best interests. It depends on how determined Ryan Poles is to make it happen. Nobody would be upset about such an outcome.

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Dr. Steven Sallie
Dr. Steven Sallie
May 17, 2024 4:46 pm

Moore is the obvious choice here, but a complex calculus might suggest something not even considered currently. I can think of 10-12 forces, factors, or variables which could complicate matters for someone like Poles and his brain trust.

May 17, 2024 1:34 pm

You’ve already ran this story about DJ being the first priority for a contact extension shortly after they traded for Allen. Keep smoking the good stuff!!

May 17, 2024 1:13 pm

I’ve been saying this the entire time. Allen is a luxury extension. Moore is the bigger priority as the faster they can extend him, the cheaper it will become. Either way Poles is going to want to sign Moore whether it’s after this season or next, and with Odunze and possibly Jenkins and Jones, etc, Allen is on the backburner. I’ll be surprised if he signs on for longer than this year, unless it’s a 1 year contract that’s fairly team friendly. Allen might want to stay another year due to how things are trending with the Bears. This year… Read more »

May 17, 2024 11:12 am

DJ will be a priority. Keenan, I’d like to see the team run it back with him for one more season if the price isn’t prohibitive. Tevin has a lot to prove. When he’s healthy and on the field he’s been very good, but let’s see him get through an entire campaign playing at a high level. Looking at Kyler’s new contract is going to be extremely necessary. Overall, the Bears are in great shape. Retain the core, focus on the OL and DL in next year’s FA and draft. Interested to see if they trade for DL help before… Read more »

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