We begin today with a tribute to our lesser-known presidents:
“I Love Lisa” is the 15th episode of The Simpsons’ fourth season, first airing on February 11, 1993. It’s been 28 years, and I still know every stinking word to “Mediocre Presidents.” And frankly, I’m not even ashamed about it because it’s an absolute bop.
• Brad Biggs makes some good points in this column, with the strongest being that the Bears shouldn’t throw their 2021 first-round pick into a deal for a quarterback this offseason:
— Brad Biggs (@BradBiggs) February 14, 2021
• It’s a sensible angle. A team in win-now mode isn’t in position to cough up its first first-round selection since 2018. The Bears should be using that pick to take the best player on the board or to trade down to get a volume of picks who could help immediately. As we saw last year, the Bears used two second-round picks to fill important needs. And moving forward, tight end Cole Kmet and cornerback Jaylon Johnson are penciled into the starting lineup for the next three seasons. Hence, it’s important to have a first-round pick to dangle in possible deals if value in volume is your thing. Otherwise, having a first-round pick at 20 is a nice consolation prize.
• But there’s a “but” … because there’s always a but. Because in a world where you have to give to receive, you have to give something to get something in return. With that being said, I’m less comfortable with offering the 2022 first-round pick than I am with sending the 2021 first-rounder in a deal. And merely thinking about packaging the 20th pick in this upcoming draft makes me twitchy. But trading away that 2022 first-rounder might be even more dangerous.
• Trading for a quarterback who flops would certainly lead to a regime change if the team follows in bottoming out. If the Bears trade their 2021 first for said quarterback, I can write that up as a sunk cost and move on with a new GM, head coach, and 2022 first-round pick positioned to take a quarterback. But if you trade that 2022 first-rounder and fall apart, then you’re looking at a Texans-like situation where you don’t have a top-5 pick in an offseason in which you’re hiring a new coach and GM. That’s simply not an attractive situation. In fact, that’s the worst-case scenario for the Bears in the short *AND* long terms.
• Sigh. And this is what it looks like when you’re living with the consequences of butchering having the No. 3 pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.
• Rather than going further down that rabbit hole, here’s the best of the Bears’ rookies in 2020:
• In yesterday’s Bullets, we discussed the downside that reared its ugly head for some of the players who signed the biggest contracts in free agency last year. A day later, I found myself intrigued by Brent Soboleski (Bleacher Report) highlighting potential free agent bargains for this upcoming offseason. If you’re a Bears fans who dreams of shopping on a budget, this group has some potential team fits. At the top of my list would be offensive lineman Cam Robinson, a left tackle by trade who could make sense as someone who benefits from a position switch to the other side of the line or as an interior lineman. Chicago has needs at both, so perhaps Robinson should be on the Bears’ radar.
• I’ve been proud of my recent poetry and am ready to dive back into some creative writing:
Roses are red,
the Bears wear blue,
Chicago's football team needs a quarterback
to win Super Bowl number two!
— Bleacher Nation Bears (@BN_Bears) February 14, 2021
• Maybe they’ll use the cap space on another backup for Aaron Rodgers or a reserve running back:
The #Packers recently created about $8.3M in cap space by converting LT David Bakhtiari’s more than $11M roster bonus into a signing bonus and spreading it out over the length of the contract. He’ll make the same as before, but it gives GB some room to operate.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 13, 2021
• I thought the MNF booth was fine last year and am hoping it gets a second chance in what will (hopefully) be a more normal year:
NEW MEDIA COLUMN: A long and revealing interview with ESPN's Steve Levy on calling Monday Night Football, why he believes his booth should return in 2021, and seeing all the stories about other broadcasters being considered for his MNF job.https://t.co/m11QU94QdP
— Richard Deitsch (@richarddeitsch) February 15, 2021
• I want to clear some time away in my day and read this:
This is a really good LeBron story, it goes way beyond the headline https://t.co/16qypKZUQC
— Joe Vardon (@joevardon) February 15, 2021