Whatever contention the Bears and Allen Robinson have regarding a contract extension for the wide receiver has gone into full blown public consumption mode. According to the latest, Allen Robinson *has* asked about a trade from the Chicago Bears.
A report from Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune:
Allen Robinson removed mentions of the #Bears from his social media accounts today. That's likely representative of his frustration over negotiations for a new contract but it's after the wide receiver asked for a trade.https://t.co/VsEDumUrnL
— Brad Biggs (@BradBiggs) September 15, 2020
It started with Robinson removing Bears-related mentions from his social media pages. Then it evolved into a national report of growing frustration with the lack of a deal. And while initial reports suggested Robinson had not grown frustrated to the point where he would request a trade, that appears to have changed. Quickly.
And while it would seem unlikely that the Bears would trade their best and most consistent offensive contributor (perhaps especially with so many on-going questions surrounding their starting and future QB), we are where we are. If this report is accurate, the Bears (and we) have to deal with it. And what the Bears want may not ultimately be what they get.
Now, you might be thinking: But in-season blockbuster deals rarely happen! And you’re right. They are rare. But let me remind you that we’re just two seasons removed from the Cowboys sending a first-round pick to the Raiders for Amari Cooper shortly after the Week 6 games concluded. And because Biggs writes “Robinson would have no problem finding at least a few teams willing to discuss contract parameters in a trade-and-sign deal if the Bears were to grant permission” I’m on high alert.
The Bears are a franchise that tends to operate behind the scenes, so I don’t imagine they wanted a contract dispute to go public. But after months of not getting anything done, this is where: complicated contract squabbles with the team’s most productive pass-catcher in the prime of his career. GM Ryan Pace has gotten a fair number of deals done for high profile core members before season-openers before, but failed to do so with Robinson. Perhaps that is sticking in the receiver’s craw.
Whatever the case is, the Bears are in a sticky situation with a popular and productive player. This isn’t going away any time soon.
Oh, and to sum up our feelings on the matter, I’ll turn to Michael:
Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson. Extend Allen Robinson (2/2)
— Michael Cerami (@Michael_Cerami) September 15, 2020
UPDATE (Brett): Adam Schefter spoke with Robinson’s agent who says a trade request did not actually happen, but Robinson certainly isn’t happy:
Brandon Parker, agent for Bears’ WR Allen Robinson, said he and his client have not requested a trade. However Robinson, who is in the last year of his contract, is unhappy that Chicago has been unwilling to pay him market value for wide receivers.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 15, 2020
To be sure, sometimes there’s play in what constitutes “request” and “not,” but I think we can sum things up pretty accurately in saying the two sides aren’t in the same place, financially, on a deal, and Robinson’s camp has wanted that information out publicly. I say fine. Use whatever leverage you can to get paid when your time is short in this sport. As for the Bears, we hope a deal gets done, and they’d be wise to try to squash the public beefing as soon as possible. If they’re drawing a line in the sand on extension terms, though, this could get uglier before it gets better.