The legal tampering period for free agents opens up in about 15 minutes, and here’s another name you might be hearing about in connection with the Bears:
— Alex Marvez (@alexmarvez) March 7, 2017
That would be 25-year-old wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson, who is better known for his kick returning abilities, for which he’s twice been named All-Pro. His contributions on special teams, then, would set something of a floor for his value to the Bears.
As a wide receiver, Patterson caught 52 passes in 2016, but did so as part of the Vikings’ short passing game (Patterson averaged just 8.7 yards per catch). Not a bad year, but he still hasn’t quite matched the hope the Vikings had for him when they tabbed him as their first round pick (29th overall) in 2013. Perhaps there’s still more of a breakout coming, but Patterson would be less of an Alshon Jeffery replacement, and more of a gamble on upside (again, with the floor of “very good, but expensive, kick returner”). As Luis noted this morning, the Bears are expected to move on from Eddie Royal, for what it’s worth.
As for the possible price tag:
— Charles Robinson (@CharlesRobinson) March 6, 2017
Note, that’s exceed $4 million per year.
It’s a relatively substantial commitment when you consider that most of what you’re paying for is potential that hasn’t arrived yet. Still, Patterson’s range of abilities would make him an interesting addition to a Bears team that is simply looking for offensive contributions wherever it can find them.