There’s one game left in the Chicago Bears’ lackluster 2021 season – and big changes may be ahead for the organization. Brad Biggs answers readers’ questions about the team’s future and more in his weekly Bears post pose.
What do you think the odds are that Ryan Pace will stay in the Bears organization somehow? – @jasonkmcguire
I can tell you when I talk to people around the league that there are definitely some people who think he has a good chance of staying with the Bears either in his current role as general manager or in another property on the football side. . Others believe the Bears will make more radical changes than just replacing coach Matt Nagy.
I can tell you when a source I spoke to earlier this week said a little over a month ago that he would have put the chance of Pace staying at a little higher than 50%. Now he believes that Pace’s chances of staying with the Bears are greater than that. We know President George McCaskey has been holding Pace high for some time. He will not let him be a guiding voice in an upgrade of more than $ 100 million in Halas Hall without having total confidence in him. It is possible that McCaskey will allow Pace to see through the development of quarterback Justin Fields, and perhaps McCaskey likes some of the younger players on the list.
Speculation about the future of Pace and Nagy has been the driving story this season, especially as the team went into a five-game spiral that began in mid-October. Fortunately, we have some clarity when the next postpose falls.
Is there a chance that Teven Jenkins will be moved back to the right tackle? – @mikestevlic
We can speculate about Jenkins’ future weekly between now and the start of the offseason program, but no one really knows. At this point, it’s probably best to sit back, watch what moves the Bears are making, and then wait to hear how the people leading the attack are doing with the lineup of linemen under contract. Clearly, the Bears could tell us a lot more about the role of the Jenkins, who move forward with their actions if they venture into free action to sign a left tackle.
Based on what Matt Nagy said Monday about wanting to start rookie quarterback Justin Fields this Sunday in Minnesota, if he is healthy, my feeling is that the team also wants Jenkins back in the starting lineup. He has played 125 snaps on the offensive this season and it has been a tough game of protection and penalties. He is going to benefit greatly from a full and healthy offseason, training camp and preseason. I could see Jenkins staying on the left tackle, switching to the right tackle or even moving inside to guard. I can tell you in the spring when he was drafted that I had more people mention to me that he could be a future guard than a left tackle, but the Bears should rate him by left tackle to see if it is an option.
Who finishes in second place if the Bears win Sunday? The schedule for third place looks easier with probably the Atlanta Falcons, Houston Texans and San Francisco 49ers vs. New Orleans Saints, Indianapolis Colts and Arizona Cardinals. – @jtbcubs
Good question. I actually watched this during the “Monday Night Football” game and wondered about the same thing. The Bears have played a tough program this season and it has something to do with the team’s record of 6-10, no doubt about it.
Based on my understanding, if the Bears defeat the Vikings on Sunday at the US Bank Stadium, so both teams finish with 7-10 records, Minnesota will be number two in the NFC North. You need to go to the fifth tiebreaker to determine the location. Here is the order of tiebreakers and how it would develop in this scenario:
- Head-to-head (1-1)
- NFC North record (both 3-3)
- Record in regular games (both 4-12)
- NFC record (both 5-7)
- The strength of victory (great edge for the Vikings)
Currently, Minnesota’s winning streak is .446 to the Bears’ .354. There is no way this will return with a game back. The Vikings count victories over three teams that are currently over 0.500 – the Green Bay Packers, Los Angeles Chargers and Pittsburgh Steelers. The Bears have two wins over teams currently over – the Cincinnati Bengals and the Las Vegas Raiders.
Right now, it looks like third place in NFC North will draw home games against Houston and San Francisco and an away game in Atlanta in 2022. I would say it’s a preferred draw rather than having to face New Orleans, Indianapolis and Arizona.
NFC North will also play against teams in NFC East and AFC East in 2022.
What is the best way to get more drafts? – @ yeezus__24
The quickest and most effective method would be to stop acting in the draft so often. The Bears have done this many times during Pace, where they have dealt with quarterbacks Mitch Trubisky and Justin Fields, outside linebacker Leonard Floyd, linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski, free safety Eddie Jackson, running back David Montgomery, wide receivers Anthony Miller and Darnell Mooney and offensive tackle Teven. Jenkins.
To paint an accurate picture, consider that Pace has also traded down several times over the years, but it is the expensive trades to move up in rounds 1, 2 and even 3 that tilt the scale when you examine this.
Pace is aggressive by nature and likes to go and pick up a player that he and his staff are convinced of. In some cases, it succeeded. In other cases not so much. Being more patient and staying true to his board would allow the Bears to retain more choices. They will be shorthanded again this year.
In addition, the Bears could try to turn around some players who are currently under contract to select draft. I do not know exactly what they could get for players like outside linebackers Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn. Remember, they make a lot of money. Mack is on the books for more than $ 17 million by 2022, and Quinn is to earn $ 12.9 million. We’ll see what shakes out as the draft approaches.
What free agents will not be back next year besides Allen Robinson? – @ footballnut20
There is a long list of players on the list who are about to get out of the contract. The Bears have only 26 players under contract for 2022. It does not include limited free agents and exclusive rights free agents that they can easily bring back, but it is still a very low number and that is why the available cap space may become smaller. quickly gone. Believe it or not, at the start of the league year the Bears can get into the top-10 in vacant space, but there will be plenty of places to fill. Start signing some high-priced players, and the attic space and money budget can drop quickly.
A partial list of pending unlimited free agents, not including Robinson on offense: QB Andy Dalton; Olympics James Daniels, Jason Peters, Germain Ifedi and Elijah Wilkinson; backward Damien Williams; wide receivers Marquise Goodwin, Jakeem Grant and Damiere Byrd; and close ends Jimmy Graham and Jesse James.
In defense: DL Akiem Hicks and Bilal Nichols; LB Alec Ogletree and Christian Jones; and defensive backs Artie Burns, Tashaun Gipson, Deon Bush, DeAndre Houston-Carson and Marqui Christian.
Special teams: P Pat O’Donnell and LS Patrick Scales.
The Bears could certainly bring some of those players back, but with an expected coaching change, you can count on a significant turnover on roster.
What is Tarik Cohen’s plan to enter next year? – @ t_rigs_23
That’s a question the Bears will have to answer as the offseason unfolds. Cohen was not healthy enough to return from the torn ACL he suffered in week 3 of the 2020 season and it is reasonable to wonder how he will be if and when he can get on the field in the spring and summer.
Cohen played only two games after signing his contract extension, and he has a base salary of $ 3.9 million with a $ 100,000 training bonus for 2022. Right now, $ 2.5 million of that base salary is guaranteed for injuries. So if Cohen can not return to health, he will collect it. The $ 2.5 million is fully guaranteed shortly after the start of the new league year in March, so it will be a deadline to keep an eye on. I doubt the Bears will pay him $ 4 million next season, but you never know.
Will Devin Hester be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame? I think. – @ brendon310
This is a postpose that first gets a question from former Bears player and special team ace Brendon Ayanbadejo, a three-time Pro Bowl selection. I believe Hester has a very good chance of getting in as a first-time pick. Although Hester is not a choice at first ballot, he is a close lock to reach Canton, Ohio, sooner rather than later.
One of the reasons I think Hester is in a good position this year is that there does not appear to be one or two slam-dunk choices. There is not a quarterback with big stats or multiple MVP awards or Player of the Year. It helps Hester along with all the other 14 finalists:
- Jared Allen, defensive end
- Willie Anderson, offensive tackle
- Round Barber, cornerback / safety
- Tony Boselli, offensive tackle
- LeRoy Butler, security
- Torry Holt, wide receiver
- Andre Johnson, Broadband Receiver
- Sam Mills, linebacker
- Richard Seymour, defensive end / tackle
- Zach Thomas, linebacker
- DeMarcus Ware, linebacker / defensive end
- Reggie Wayne, wide receiver
- Patrick Willis, linebacker
- Bryant Young, defensive tackle / finish
Clearly, Ayanbadejo’s blocking had a lot to do with Hester’s success during a brilliant career as a return man for the Bears.
The Cole Kmet breakout season has not happened. How much of it do you put down to the offensive issues, or do you think he will likely be more of an in-line block for his career? – @dawestley
I do not think Kmet has disappointed this season. If you expected him to be among the best tight-ends in the league in terms of reception, you were unrealistic. Kmet is a Y-tight end and he is a prolific receiver for that position. I do not think it is a blow to Kmet to say that he will not be Travis Kelce or Darren Waller as the recipient. He has received 56 receptions (double the number he had as a rookie) for 564 yards, and he averages 10.1 yards per carry. catch, an improvement over 8.7 from 2020.
The fights in the offensive have affected all the players in the skill position. With a more functional offensive next season, it’s easy to imagine he has 70-75 catches. He does not have a touchdown this season, but the Bears have prioritized trying to get the ball to Jimmy Graham in the red zone. I think Kmet’s development this season has been fine.
Does the potential move to Arlington Heights increase or decrease the chances of a large-scale organizational restructuring? – @mdourlain
That’s a good question. I believe the Bears have two completely separate projects. The plan for a move to Arlington Heights is a massive project and one that will dominate time and attention from the franchise’s management for the foreseeable future. It’s a project I would expect Ted Phillips to play a major role in.
But George McCaskey may not be happy with the state of the football team and I think he has been working the last few months to investigate what is happening and what moves he will make.
No, I do not think the stadium issue will prevent the team from making big moves. McCaskey realizes the need to get things right on the football side and can multitask while being aware of both priorities.