This Time It's For Real

Earlier when Russell Wilson was grumbling it was easy to dismiss it but now he's naming names and the Bears are on his short list.
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The Russell Wilson situation has percolated quietly in the backdrop of all the quarterback news and suddenly it burst forth Thursday with a possible opening for several teams to acquire one of the league's best passers.

One could be the Bears.

Wilson's agent told ESPN's Adam Schefter the 32-year-old quarterback would be willing to play for four teams. He said there is no request for a trade at this time but if the team decided to trade him the four other teams he'd be interested in playing for are the Bears, the Dallas Cowboys, the New Orleans Saints and the Las Vegas Raiders.

If the Saints are in play, then certainly the Bears should be. The Saints are drafting 28th overall and couldn't come up with what the Seahawks would want in terms of high-level picks. The Bears have this problem if they pursue Deshaun Watson because they're drafting 20th, but the teams with interest in Watson have much more to trade than the Bears.

However, in this case Raiders pick just a few spots in front of the Bears at 17. The Cowboys are an entirely different situation and not one the Bears could overtake.

The problem is not only Dallas, but the Bears' inability to offer anything besides lesser draft picks. They have Allen Robinson, but what would Seattle want with Robinson when they have D.K. Metcalf? They don't need a complementary receiver like Robinson. Their complement is Tyler Lockett, another 1,000-yard receiver.

Dallas can always tag and trade Dak Prescott in a deal for Wilson, besides the fact they possess a far better spot in Round 1 to trade from at No. 10.

Wilson has been at his best the last three seasons, even if it hasn't brought the Seahawks the kind of success it did earlier when they had one of the NFL's best defenses. For the three seasons he has a 107.2 passer rating, without a rating below 105.1. He also has averaged 7.8 yards an attempt while throwing for 106 touchdowns with 25 interceptions.

The fit in Chicago would be ideal depending on which version of the Bears offense is run. The one which succeeded late last season would work to perfection. It might take a while for Wilson to adjust to the Kansas City spread attack with an RPO emphasis that coach Matt Nagy began with in 2018.

Regardless, Wilson at 32 is still athletic enough and a good enough passer to run about anything. Despite being in his 30s, he has averaged 410 yards rushing over the last three years. That's down slightly from his first six years but by comparison Mitchell Trubisky had one 421-yard rushing season but never went over 248 yards in any of the other three.

Immediately after word of this came from Schefter, Chicago started to explode. The Carson Wentz trade furor had faded and hope started to dim for a veteran quarterback acquisition.

Even the players started to get interested again.

Sadly, this is a bit like the Watson saga. The Bears can't compete with the top one or two teams in pursuit.

Also, the Seahawks have to eat a fortune of dead cap to "rid themselves" of Wilson. However, they could realize cap savings if the deal came after June 1. But what team wants to wait until June 1 to trade?

Wilson's cap charges would just about choke off the Bears salary cap. There would be no Allen Robinson. They'd have to let him leave. They might be cutting Khalil Mack and others because Wilson takes $32 million and $37 million off the books the next two years. If they traded players like Akiem Hicks and Kyle Fuller, it would alleviate the pressure on the cap but would Seattle want veteran players with big salaries?

However, what this could do is open the door for another quarterback to come to Chicago.

If the Raiders wanted Wilson but the Seahawks didn't want Derek Carr in exchange, maybe Vegas trades Carr to the Bears for draft picks which they then ship to Seattle. The same would work with Dallas and Prescott, although it would seem rather ridiculous for Seattle not to want Prescott.

A situation like this opens up so many more possibilities.

So even if the Bears can't get Wilson, it could mean another opportunity for a different veteran quarterback.

Much like with the Watson situation, this is all based on rumor and talk because neither team has said they're trading their quarterback.

The mere fact they're talking about it makes it a possibility now.


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