The Bears were able to acquire Nick Foles in a trade with a fourth-round draft pick they didn't know they'd have for certain until a few weeks before agreeing to the deal.
It was a fourth-round compensatory draft pick they received from the NFL for losing Adrian Amos to the Green Bay Packers, and they stood to lose that pick until they cut free agent acquisition Mike Davis.
The Bears stand to receive compensatory picks again this year according to Overthecap.com, which keeps close watch on this each year even though the NFL has never officially released its formula for determining the picks awarded at the end of Rounds 3 and later for losing free agents.
Overthecap.com finds the Bears will get back three sixth-round compensatory picks, and it all falls in line with what general manager Ryan Pace was hoping when he spent a fourth-round pick in 2021 to get a fifth-round pick and draft Tulsa pass rusher Trevis Gipson.
The idea is to regain some draft capital for next year after spending one of the picks.
"You know, we're always responsible with these draft picks," Pace said after the draft. "With a little foresight I think with the compensatory situation coming forward, we'll hopefully recoup some of those picks, but we felt like that was kind of a sweet spot in the draft right there in the fifth round."
The sixth-round picks the website sees the Bears coming away with are for losing quarterback Chase Daniel, defensive lineman Nick Williams and safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in free agency this year.
So what good are three sixth-round draft picks anyway?
After all, since Pace became general manager the Bears have had only one player drafted in the sixth or seventh round start a game—wide receiver Javon Wims.
Those sixth-round picks can be gold, however. Just look at what the Bears did with their sixth-round picks in this draft.
They traded the 196th and 200th and flipped seventh-round picks with the Eagles to go up into Round 5 and draft wide receiver Darnell Moody.
So with three compensatory picks in that round and their own pick in Round 6 in 2021, they should be looking to move up again and make use of this rare chance to get back valued lost talent.
There is some other good news about the compensatory picks. The new CBA moved up the deadline this year to qualify for picks, meaning teams on Monday were able to sign free agents and not have it count against them as they qualify for compensatory picks. So it will aid in facilitating a decent later phase of free agency for teams, and the Bears certainly can use this, as well. In fact, they already put it to use by signing former Raiders and Packers return man Trevor Davis.
By and large the late-round compensatqry picks seem like little but when packaged together they can help a team lacking draft picks come away feeling better about their draft, like the Bears this year