The Chicago Bears have put all their eggs in the Russell Wilson basket, and if that trade doesn’t pan out, they will find themselves in the same quarterback purgatory where they have largely resided for decades. The cycle restarted itself in the 2017 NFL Draft, when the Bears traded four picks to move up from third to second overall in order to take Mitchell Trubisky. It hasn’t quite gone how they planned.
With free agency underway, and a couple quarterback trades already taking place, the options are getting a little thin for the Bears. If the Wilson trade doesn’t transpire, what signal-caller could the Bears sign that would infuriate the hell out of their fanbase?
At least, that’s what I was writing.
I kid you not. As I was putting the final touches on a list of potential, awful, cheap veteran QBs the Bears might turn to after waiting way too long to address the position — a list that included Andy Dalton — Dalton signed with the Bears. One year, $10 million guaranteed. Up to $13 million with incentives.
Dalton is coming off a backup season in Dallas where he stepped in for the injured Dak Prescott, going 4-5 in nine starts with a 64.9 completion percentage, 14 touchdowns, and 8 interceptions. He was positively mediocre.
For Chicago, Dalton’s arrival likely means that trade talks with the Seahawks collapsed, so Bears general manager Ryan Pace instead scraped the bottom of a moldy quarterback barrel and plugged in whatever came up as his starter for 2021. That, or the Bears are still interested in Wilson, and are about to offer an absolutely obscene amount of picks to the Seahawks for him, wasting Dalton’s $10 million in the process. Either or.
Pace royally effed up this entire situation. You think Andy Dalton’s aging arm is a better option than just picking up the fifth-year option on Mitchell Trubisky, which they declined before last season? Come on. If you didn’t have a plan for how to attack the need and upgrade the position, then why decline Trubisky’s option? Pace had almost a full calendar year to come up with a plan for quarterback, and this is what he settled on? That’s rough.
But hey, at least Chicago fans are used to this level of disappointment, right? When the best quarterback you’ve had in franchise history is smokin’ Jay Cutler, that’s a pretty sad list. Let’s just say that the Chicago natives in the Deadspin company chat were apoplectic, stringing profanities together in a wild, passionate-yet-deeply-scarred string of emotional self-awareness unlike many things I’ve been fortunate enough to witness.
Well, Bears fans, my deepest condolences on the latest addition to a franchise full of mediocrity. If this is the straw that breaks the camel’s back and leads to Pace’s eventual firing, maybe it’ll be a blessing in disguise.