- Colleen Kane, Dan Wiederer and Brad Biggs pass on free agency information:
“Chase Daniel is headed to the Lions on a three-year deal, ESPN reported.
“What it means: It was known the Bears likely weren’t going to bring Chase Daniel back for a third season as Mitch Trubisky’s backup, so he moves on to be the backup to Matthew Stafford.
“The Lions will be his fifth team in 11 seasons, a remarkable career for someone who has made only five starts. For the Bears, Daniel was a veteran presence to help guide Trubisky through coach Matt Nagy’s offense, and he also served as a team leader and the Bears’ representative to the NFLPA. He also started three games, throwing six touchdown passes and four interceptions. His presence is valued enough that the Lions gave him a $13.05 million deal, which contains a voidable clause.”
I think its fair to wonder if the Lions signed Daniels with more than just being a competent back up in mind. Daniels was by all accounts a good mentor for Trubisky when he was with the Bears.
The odds in Las Vegas that the Lions will take Tagovailoa? -110. That’s tied for the top spot with the Dolphins. Despite all of the denials coming from the Lions camp, sometimes actions speak louder than words.
- Kevin Fishbain at The Athletic gives some thoughts on the Robert Quinn signing:
“The Bears went from sacking the quarterback on 8.1 percent of pass attempts in 2018 (ninth in the NFL) to 5.6 percent in 2019, which ranked 27th. [Bears pass rusher Khalil] Mack didn’t put up his usual numbers. Akiem Hicks missed 11 games. But Floyd should have had plenty of opportunities to have a breakout season. Instead, he had one sack in the final 15 games after two in the opener.”
A good part of the reason for the Bears disappointing 2019 season was due to the failure of several young players to bloom as anticipated. Chief among these was quarterback Mitchell Trubisky and tight end Adam Shaheen. But Floyd’s failure to develop was close behind and was a major problem last year despite the defense’s solid statistics.
Early in his career, former Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio helped Floyd out by scheming relatively easy sacks for him. That stopped when Fangio left and with the hiring of Chuck Pagano.
Nevertheless, with Mack getting triple teamed, Floyd never saw a double team on the other side all year. Three sacks under those conditions just won’t cut it.
Quinn, on the other hand, is also a bit worrisome. He’s a couple years older than you would like and, though he certainly performed for the Cowboys last year, he looked miserable with the Dolphins and at the end with the Rams before that. Which Robert Quinn are the Bears getting?
Nevertheless, one would expect that Quinn will do a better job of beating offensive linemen one-on-one than Floyd did.
- Biggs comments on the signing of tight end Jimmy Graham:
“Graham, 33, was a dynamic target earlier in his career with the Saints, but he hasn’t run well in recent seasons, making it difficult to envision that he will emerge as a threat for Bears coach Matt Nagy. Graham made 38 receptions for 447 yards with three touchdowns for the Packers last season while playing with Aaron Rodgers. So how will he look with Mitch Trubisky or pick-your-replacement? And who exactly were the Bears bidding against?”
I can’t imagine there was another team willing to pay Graham half of that money.
General manager Ryan Pace frequently uses the word “conviction” when talking about the pursuit of players. As a result, you almost get the impression that he doesn’t negotiate. He just decides what a player is worth regardless of the market and makes the offer. No wonder agents do hand springs every time the Bears call.
I have no idea what Pace saw in Graham that made him think he was worth that kind of money. Perhaps it was fond memories of what Graham did on his fantasy team in 2014.
Unfortunately the reality in 2020 is that Graham is an older player who has lost his explosiveness to bad knees.
Perhaps even worse, since Graham doesn’t block, he doesn’t fill the gaping hole at Y tight end that the Bears desperately need to fill. If Trey Burton has finally recovered from surgery and is healthy, he’s shown before that he can perform at the U position.
But Shaheen has been a non-entity every time he has stepped on the field, which has been rarely due to injury. I’m sure recent signing Demetrius Harris is a fine player but he’s undersized and he’s not really a starter.
Finding a player to fill that hole at the Y tight end is critical. Paying double what you should for a broken down player at a position of lesser need can only eat up cap space and hurt that effort.