Rumor Mill: More Franchise Tagging, Berry Questions, 49ers Could Trade Down, More

Busy day, eh? With the Franchise Tag deadline looming in just two days, I suppose that was to be expected.

Already, we work up to word that the Bears would not be franchising Alshon Jeffery, and then we wondered what the means for the wide receiver and the Bears. Then, two more franchise decisions rolled in – both affirmative – on Chandler Jones and Kawann Short.

And now I’m hoping to sneak a quick pass around the rumor mill before more news breaks …

  • Speaking of which, this dropped as I started typing:
  • That was the expectation, assuming a longer-term deal wasn’t worked out first. Bell, 25, was among the best all-around backs in the game, and rushed for the fifth most yards in the league despite sitting out three games for missing a drug test. He’ll make around $12 million via the exclusive franchise tag, and the sides will presumably keep negotiating. Given the presence of Jordan Howard, there’s no direct impact to the relevant free agent market for the Bears, mind you.
  • [adinserter block=”1″]

  • Elsewhere on the franchise front:
  • Berry, among the best safeties in the game (and an obvious fit for the Bears in that regard), has previously said that he wouldn’t play a second straight year on the one-year franchise commitment, so we’ll see if the Chiefs follow through on an approach that could leave them with an unhappy star safety – and might leave them a bit cornered until they can sign him to a satisfactory multi-year deal. As for Poe, if he does in fact reach unrestricted free agency, he could be an intriguing play for the Bears, too, depending on how they decide to structure their defensive line heading into 2017. He wouldn’t come cheap, though.
  • Berry does not show up on Adam Schefter’s latest, for what it’s worth (which might not be much, given the limitations of the Twitter medium):
  • [adinserter block=”2″]

  • New 49ers GM John Lynch is already signaling a willingness to trade down in the draft from the number two pick, perhaps suggesting that they’re not enamored with the quarterbacks available in the draft (or any of the other non-Myles Garrett options). Trading down is more easily-suggested than pulled off, of course, especially in a draft where the very reason you’d want to trade down is because there’s not a clear “next best” player available. In that respect, you can see plenty of parallels here for the Bears, should they, too, look to go the trade down route. Obviously getting the same quarterback at pick 10 as you’d get at 2, for example, and adding additional picks in the process, sounds like a dream come true. Finding that team that desperately wants to trade up to number 2 or number 3, though, is going to be more difficult. We’ll see what shakes out at the Combine, though, as it’s possible some players will start making clear moves up and down the board.
  • The Chiefs are not infrequently mentioned as among the teams possibly looking for a quarterback upgrade this offseason, but not so, according to owner Clark Hunt, who is backing Alex Smith as the quarterback for the team heading into 2017. The Chiefs have been perfectly successful under Smith’s stewardship, but have failed to advance past the divisional round of the playoffs in all of his four seasons with the team.
  • Rob Gronkowski hopes teammate and fellow tight end (and former Bear) Martellus Bennett breaks the bank in free agency.
  • [adinserter block=”3″]

  • In addition to tagging Short, the Panthers announced two defensive end signings, taking a couple possible free agents off the board: the team’s sack leader Mario Addison gets a three-year deal, and emerging depth/borderline starter Wes Horton gets a two-year deal.
  • Antonio Brown might land a big new deal, and give Alshon Jeffery a contract target to dream about in free agency:
  • [adinserter block=”9″]

    written by

    Luis C. Medina, who you can find on Twitter at lcm1986, has been covering the Chicago Bears at Bleacher Nation since 2017. Since then, he has written about 3 head coaches, 5 play-callers, and 11 starting quarterbacks. Previously, Luis wrote about the Cubs and MLB at BN (2015-16) and worked in the Chicago Tribune sports department (2011-16). He also co-hosted a Cubs postgame show, Outside the Ivy, in 2019.

    more bears news

    Robbie Gould is Going to be a High School Football Coach

    The Chicago Bears all-time leading scorer is off to conquer a new challenge. Robbie Gould is becoming the head coach at Rolling Meadows High School in suburban Chicagoland, reports the Sun-Times' Michael O'Brien. https://twitter.com/Suntimes/status/1761048062556766631 Depending on how traffic is going,...

    Jaylon Johnson’s Franchise Tag Price, No Agent for Caleb Williams, Eric Bieniemy’s Future, and Other Bears Bullets

    Now that Cody Bellinger's deal with is done the Cubs, is a Jaylon Johnson extension from the Bears next? Well ... maybe: https://twitter.com/PFF_Brad/status/1761753662471172338 Stay tuned, Bears fans. It feels like business is about to pick up as Combine Week kicks...

    Here’s How Much Justin Fields’ Fifth-Year Option Will Cost

    Players who are eligible to get the fifth-year option picked up on their rookie contracts were in for a treat on Friday. And, yes, we're lookin' at you, Justin Fields. NFL Network insider Tom Pelissero has the deets behind the...

    The Quarterback Tapes: Drake Maye vs. N.C. State (2023)

    If you've been following along lately, you've seen that I've been in full draft season mode. It's watching tape season, and while I think the Bears will draft Caleb Williams, I'm not limiting the film study to just Williams. So,...

    Cap Shenanigans, Pros and Cons, Who’s Behind Coach Flus’ New Look? And Other Bears Bullets

    I'm looking forward to using the new oven that was installed yesterday. But first, this installment of BN Bears Bullets. One day later, I'm still trying to get a full grasp on the 2024 NFL salary cap ballooning to more...

    Tee Higgins Gets the First Franchise Tag of the Offseason

    It only took a few hours after the $255.4 million salary cap was announced by the NFL for the Cincinnati Bengals to become the first team to utilize the Franchise Tag in 2024. Come on down, Tee Higgins. You're about...

    Things We Learned From the Matt Eberflus, Shane Waldron, and Eric Washington Press Conference

    Even though Matt Eberflus and his newfound beard stole the show, there were some things that stood out when he and new Chicago Bears coordinators Shane Waldron and Eric Washington spoke with the media on Thursday. Here are four noteworthy...

    Around the NFL: Mock Draft Medley, Chiefs Sign Matt Araiza, More

    We're a few days from the NFL Scouting Combine getting started in Indianapolis and draft season is in full effect. Let's take a look at some of the recent NFL Mock Drafts that have been making the rounds this week...

    WHOA! The 2024 NFL Salary Cap Will Be $255.4 Million

    This is not your father's Friday news dump. The NFL salary cap is ballooning to $255.4 million, reports NFL Network insider Tom Pelissero. My mind is blown. I've spent minutes on end with my jaw dropped while thinking about this...

    Justin Fields Trade Watch: When is it Coming? Who’s In? Who’s Out?

    There is a growing expectation that the first steps toward a Justin Fields trade will be taken at the upcoming NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. When to expect a Justin Fields trade? The first date trades can be officially official...

    Latest News

    Lehigh vs. Boston University: Free Live Stream, TV Channel, How to Watch

    The Lehigh Mountain Hawks (12-15, 9-7 Patriot League) will look to build on a five-game win streak when they host the Boston University Terriers (13-16, 8-8 Patriot League) on February 28, 2024. The Terriers have won three games in a...

    Lehigh vs. Boston University: Free Live Stream, TV Channel, How to Watch

    The Lehigh Mountain Hawks (12-15, 9-7 Patriot League) will look to build on a five-game win streak when they host the Boston University Terriers (13-16, 8-8 Patriot League) on February 28, 2024. The Terriers have won three games in a...

    Lehigh vs. Boston University: Free Live Stream, TV Channel, How to Watch

    The Lehigh Mountain Hawks (12-15, 9-7 Patriot League) will look to build on a five-game win streak when they host the Boston University Terriers (13-16, 8-8 Patriot League) on February 28, 2024. The Terriers have won three games in a...

    How to Watch Rice Owls vs. Temple Owls: Live Stream or on TV

    AAC action features the Rice Owls (11-16, 5-9 AAC) at home against the Temple Owls (10-17, 3-11 AAC) on Wednesday, February 28, 2024 at 8:00 PM ET.Rice won its previous game versus East Carolina, 70-52, on Saturday. Travis Evee starred...

    How to Watch Rice Owls vs. Temple Owls: Live Stream or on TV

    AAC action features the Rice Owls (11-16, 5-9 AAC) at home against the Temple Owls (10-17, 3-11 AAC) on Wednesday, February 28, 2024 at 8:00 PM ET.Rice won its previous game versus East Carolina, 70-52, on Saturday. Travis Evee starred...

    How to Watch Rice Owls vs. Temple Owls: Live Stream or on TV

    AAC action features the Rice Owls (11-16, 5-9 AAC) at home against the Temple Owls (10-17, 3-11 AAC) on Wednesday, February 28, 2024 at 8:00 PM ET.Rice won its previous game versus East Carolina, 70-52, on Saturday. Travis Evee starred...

    Robert Morris vs. Northern Kentucky: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    The Robert Morris Colonials (10-19, 6-12 Horizon League) will look to halt a four-game losing streak when they host the Northern Kentucky Norse (16-13, 11-7 Horizon League) on February 28, 2024 at UPMC Events Center.Robert Morris dropped its most recent...

    Robert Morris vs. Northern Kentucky: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    The Robert Morris Colonials (10-19, 6-12 Horizon League) will look to halt a four-game losing streak when they host the Northern Kentucky Norse (16-13, 11-7 Horizon League) on February 28, 2024 at UPMC Events Center.Robert Morris dropped its most recent...

    Robert Morris vs. Northern Kentucky: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

    The Robert Morris Colonials (10-19, 6-12 Horizon League) will look to halt a four-game losing streak when they host the Northern Kentucky Norse (16-13, 11-7 Horizon League) on February 28, 2024 at UPMC Events Center.Robert Morris dropped its most recent...

    Youngstown State vs. Detroit Mercy: Free Live Stream, TV Channel, How to Watch

    The Detroit Mercy Titans (1-28, 1-17 Horizon League) aim to stop a 17-game road losing streak when they visit the Youngstown State Penguins (21-9, 13-6 Horizon League) on February 28, 2024.Youngstown State was victorious in its previous game versus Green...

    more bears news