Chaotic Free Agency Frenzy Continues, Busy as Beavers, Watch Edmunds Go BOOM, and Other Bears Bullets

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Chaotic Free Agency Frenzy Continues, Busy as Beavers, Watch Edmunds Go BOOM, and Other Bears Bullets

Chicago Bears

Today is one of those days where I’m not sure how I’m functioning, but I’m happy to be functioning.

Let’s get into it.

  • The Chicago Bears were busy as beavers on the first day of the free agency negotiation period. If you were hoping for defensive upgrades, you got ’em. Linebackers came at what was essentially a 2-for-1 special. T.J. Edwards was the first deal to come down the pipe, while Tremaine Edmunds was the big splash that swept everyone off their feet. Together, they’ll make about $24.5 million a year. And it has me wondering if the Bears are better off with Edmunds and Edwards at that price than they would’ve been had they given Roquan Smith the $20 million AAV he got from the Ravens. I’m not sure there is a right or wrong answer, but I can’t wait to obsessively compare the two after the dust settles next season.
  • This is a bit of praise that makes me smile:

  • One thing that excites me about Edmunds is that we get to close the loop on the Bears’ interest on him ahead of the 2018 NFL Draft. Mel Kiper called Edmunds a “great fit” for the Bears. Edmunds drew a Brian Urlacher comparison in some circles and was often sent to Chicago in mock drafts. Yes, I realize it was a different regime that had eyes on him. But these are still the Bears and he is still the rangy, freak-ish athlete with tremendous upside. The difference is that he now has legit NFL experience under his belt. What if the Bills did all the hard work in developing Edmunds, leaving the Bears to reap the benefits over the duration of his contract? That would be nice. Imagine Edmunds performing so well that he plays his way into an extension. That would be doubly nice.
  • I love that the new guy can do this:

  • While the Bears were ponying up big dollars to upgrade the linebackers, we saw a bunch of defensive tackles go off the board. Javon Hargrave went to the 49ers early on Monday, while Dre’Mont Jones (Seahawks) and Zach Allen (Broncos) went off the board in the evening. But it’s not as if the Bears did nothing up front on defense. The DeMarcus Walker signing intrigues me. The way I see it, having useful depth in the trenches is a suitable alternative if your defense doesn’t have butt-kickers coming off the edge or anchoring in the middle. At a minimum, Walker’s addition should be a step up from what Al-Quadin Muhammad was offering last year. And at a relatively light cost.

  • Chicago’s defensive line needs are otherworldly at this point. And yet, GM Ryan Poles didn’t dive deep into that end of the market. But maybe we should be grateful he isn’t overpaying in ways he might see as harmful. The last thing he should be doing is handcuffing this team’s spending with questionable decisions. But on the other hand, this team still needs so much help that it makes you want to do something a little crazy. At the moment in which we currently stand, I’m happy for the upgrades that are coming this way — however marginal they might be.
  • And let’s not overlook the Nate Davis signing along the offensive line. A modest three-year deal worth up to $30 million to make the offensive line better is nice. No, it doesn’t necessarily fix the pass-blocking concerns. But maybe there is more for the Bears to squeeze out of Davis, who turns 27 in September.
  • Sean Payton making power moves in Denver took Mike McGlinchey off our board. But maybe that opens doors for the Bears to do things elsewhere. Looking at you, Orlando Brown Jr. (and maybe Laremy Tunsil?).
  • I’m doing my best not to lose the forest through the trees. Yes, the Bears still need offensive and defensive line help. However, they also need help at running back, tight end, depth at receiver, and additional assistance in the secondary. They were never going to fill all of their needs this offseason. That was never realistic. And even if they did, they weren’t going to do so with suitable long-term options at every position. With that being said, I think it is fair to share concerns about the Bears’ spending. Moreover, I’d be concerned if everyone was in agreement with how free agency dollars were being spent. There is nothing wrong with healthy discourse and disagreement.
  • Also: The Bears were always going to throw wads of cash at a bunch of different players. They were always going to overspend to get to the salary floor. And that is fine. So long as it doesn’t hinder future spending, then it’ll be OK.
  • With that being said, I’d like for the Bears to make upgrades along the defensive line. Because for as long as they’ve been playing football, defensive line play and what happens at the linebacker level goes hand-in-hand. That is why I felt in a weird spot yesterday. I like the LB upgrades, but know that those guys won’t be as effective if the defensive line isn’t eating up blockers or penetrating in the backfield.
  • This was a beautiful thing to watch last night:
  • I keep forgetting this pick exists:
  • Blackhawks tank status update:

Author: Luis Medina

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