Out of Reach

Deshaun Watson's legal troubles, the Bears' past with such situations and tough market conditions make a future pursuit of Houston QB unlikely
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When this quarterback acquisition market opened the one name on the lips of all Bears fans was one now there for all NFL fans, except for a different reason.

It was Deshaun Watson.

As lawsuits have piled up against Watson, it's easy to wonder exactly how far down the asking price for the Houston quarterback has come.

ESPN's Jeremy Fowler reported his trade value has "cratered" and FanNation's Texans insider Mike Fisher calls it a case where Houston might be "selling low."

Watson made a trade demand to start the offseason because he felt ownership went back on promises to allow him input in their coach and GM hirings. Speculation had teams offering three or even four first-round picks and other picks.

Certainly the Bears would have been interested in Watson, but with all of the teams picking ahead of them in pursuit they never would have had anything close to the kind of trade bait necessary to close the deal.

Now, it might look different to some. At least the number of picks required might be different and the number of teams in pursuit might have dropped.

Still, for a player of Watson's skill level there could be multiple suitors and some who would have better picks to offer than the Bears.

A team the Bears have already dealt with this offseason is apparently interested despite the legal situation. According to Fisher, the Philadelphia Eagles remain in the hunt for Watson.

This being the case, the Bears would seem again to be long shots for Watson. 

The Eagles are armed to the teeth with draft picks to trade after their trade of Carson Wentz and also from moving back to 12th in Round 1 from sixth.

For now, the 22 lawsuits alleging inappropriate behavior and sexual assault will keep Watson trade talk from going anywhere. The point at which it all ends is anyone's guess, but the smart money doesn't say it will end with Watson ever going to Chicago.

Bears ownership stepped back from controversial off-field situations starting in 2015.

It occurred when they signed former 49ers player Ray McDonald after he and Ryan Pace assured Bears board chairman George McCaskey there was no danger regarding past violence charges made against the defensive lineman. Then McDonald was arrested again on suspicion of felony domestic violence and made the Bears look entirely stupid.

If there is a team which would fold quickly in high-stakes pursuit of any player with the hint of legal issues, it's the Bears. This already happened when they had the inkling of interest in running back Kareem Hunt, who was in a video pushing and kicking a woman.

Anticipate the Bears confining quarterback pursuit to the draft, or to the remote chance they'd ever land Russell Wilson.

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