Finding offensive line upgrades line has to be a top priority for the Chicago Bears this offseason.
But there is one high-profile name you can already cross off GM Ryan Poles’ wish list.
Elgton Jenkins, the Packers lineman with quality starting experience at multiple spots along the line, isn’t leaving Green Bay. Heck, he isn’t even making it to free agency. That’s because NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reports Jenkins is getting a sizable extension to stay with the Packers:
Jenkins, 26, was on the cusp of free agency. In fact, he was one of the highest-ranked targets set to hit free agency this spring. And he would’ve been a priority target for the Bears (and any other team that needs offensive line help) this offseason had he made it to the open market. Then again, as RapSheet points out above, Jenkins was likely getting the Franchise Tag. Getting tagged would’ve kept him off the market and led him back to Green Bay anyway. So, when you put it that way, it’s almost as if there was a slim chance he’d make it out anyway. Even still … this is the time of year we tend to find ourselves dreaming about the future. And while we can still do that, there is one fewer free agent prospect to dream on. No biggie. There will be others.
And, of course, there will be others who get extensions and the Franchise (or Transition) tags before free agency opens its doors in March. Plus, let’s not forget about NFL Draft options who will be available in April. All of this is to say that even though it stings that the Bears won’t get a chance to flex their cap muscle and swipe a Packers top player in one fell swoop, there will be other bites at the apple. Patience, friends.