Re-Commitment to Fitness, Roster Bonus Deadlines, All About the System, and Other Bears Bullets

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Re-Commitment to Fitness, Roster Bonus Deadlines, All About the System, and Other Bears Bullets

Chicago Bears

That first Thursday of March Madness never ceases to amaze me. And while watching at home with a two-TV set-up pales in comparison to doing it big Vegas-style, the overall takeaway from yesterday was that the games were what you would expect. More, please.

•   It has been an unexpectedly busy morning for the Bears. The Larry Ogunjobi era is over before it could truly begin because of a failed physical. But the Bears wasted little time pivoting to Justin Jones, who will try to fill that role of space-eating defensive tackle. I guess this serves as a timely reminder as to why things need to become officially official — all the way down to the tiniest details of the physical. With that being said, we’ll be aware of Jones’ physical when it comes down to it. A calf injury kept him out of games last year. And shoulder injury cost him time on the field in 2020. But if he gets a clean bill of health, I’ll find myself looking forward to his arrival.

•   And now I’m thinking about first-year GM Ryan Poles discussing how seriously they’re taking physical health and fitness. Remember, they created a whole new position to really drive that home.

•   In case you were looking for more potential surprise moves, I suppose it is worth pointing out that Nick Foles and Eddie Jackson have roster bonuses due today. To be clear, I wouldn’t expect cuts. But it is always to keep these numbers in mind, especially since it looks like we’re in the midst of witnessing massive roster turnover.

•   Cutting Jackson today would result in the Bears *LOSING* $9.47 million in cap space (to go along with a dead-money hit of $24.56 million). Dropping Foles would create $3 million in cap space, but with a hit of $7,666,668. It probably isn’t worth it to part ways with Foles, whose contract is in line with what you would expect for a veteran QB2. Maybe trades down the Eline make sense. Perhaps dealing Foles to a team with quarterback depth needs makes sense (after the Bears pay that roster bonus). As for Jackson, a post-June one trade could create $11.1 million in cap space for the Bears — with just a $3.99 million dead money hit.

•   All that to say that there are options for the Bears, but I’m not sure they are worth exploring at this moment.

•   While I doubt that Foles or Jackson will hold up the market, these two fellas are doing just that:

•   The Deshaun Watson and Matt Ryan situations are fascinating to follow from afar. Will the Saints pull off a deal that makes the juice worth the squeeze for all of their black magic cap moves? Can Atlanta turn the NFC South on its ear by one-upping its rival? Where does Ryan fit in all of this? I can think of several teams (Indy, Cleveland?) who could angle for a veteran quarterback trade. And at the end, where the chips fall here could lead us to figure out where the rest of the receiver (and offensive line markets) will follow.

•   Speaking of chips falling, the Bears are on the verge of signing Byron Pringle:

•   The Bears are also on the brink of signing a former Packers receiver. No, not that one (he got traded yesterday). And not that one either (he remains a free agent option). But instead, it is Equanimeous St. Brown who is reportedly on his way to Chicago. St. Brown, whose brother Amon-Ra plays for the Lions, could bring some much-needed depth to a position room short on bodies. This isn’t the splash move many (present company included) were hoping for; we shouldn’t overlook the value of having options. Depth is good. The Bears haven’t had it at receiver in quite some time. Hopefully, Luke Getsy putting new eyes on old problems will result in some working solutions.

•   There are some post-hype sleeper vibes emanating from St. Brown, but it might take some squinting to see them. Or we could re-visit Lance Zierlein’s NFL Draft profile of the Notre Dame product:

St. Brown’s combination of size and speed will be coveted by offenses looking for a prospect who can create throwing windows down the field with his ability to separate as the route progresses. St. Brown’s competitive nature needs to improve, as does his play strength to elude early pressure from physical cornerbacks. He has never been a volume target and has just three 100-yard games in his career. St. Brown is more of a threat than a weapon at this stage, and his ceiling may be an average starter or WR3.

•   Yep, it sounds like the type of flier worth taking a risk on who could fit this offense.

•   Speaking of fitting the offense, if it anything like this tweet describes, then I’m ready to see Justin Fields cook:

•   The horizontal passing game really isn’t Fields’ strength. But the rest of that stuff? Yeah, that’s what I’m looking forward to seeing after seeing the collapse of Matt Nagy’s offense.

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•   Maybe it is just me, but I feel like we’ve been approaching the NHL Trade Deadline forever:

•   It isn’t too late to choose Chicago, Carlos:

•   *GULP*

•   If you want to get into sports betting during the NCAA Tournament, check out the best March Madness promos we’ve collected right here.

Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.