Adam Schefter, NFL Insider for ESPN, reported this morning that the New England Patriots are not expected to trade QB Jimmy Garoppolo.
The Chicago Bears, who have been in discussion in trading for the young QB. now finds themselves with an option eliminated.
The Bears focus for a QB now shifts in a different direction. Could they still call the Patriots and confirm they are not going to deal him? Sure, and with the right pieces offered, a deal might happen. But now with this news breaking, the Bears must focus on their other options at QB.
It is still very unclear as who will be the Bears starting QB next season. The Bears seem to be moving on from Jay Cutler given the reports they are shopping the 33-year-old QB.
Even with Pace saying this, the chances of Cutler being on the team week one is very small. His time in Chicago has come to an end, there is no more guaranteed money on his contract, and in best interest of both sides, it’s best to move on.
The Chicago Bears will wait until Cutler is medically cleared to trade or release him.
Here is Ryan Pace on the Jay Cutler situation Wednesday morning at the NFL combine in Indianapolis:
“A lot has to play out. Obviously that is a hot topic and it should be. There are a lot of different scenarios right now and there are a lot of different things that could happen and it is fluid and it is fluid throughout this week and as we approach free agency and even after free agency. It’s our responsibility to have a plan in place, which we do, which is flexible and adaptable as the landscape is changing.”
There is no question Pace drafts a QB in the upcoming draft. Whether it is with the third overall pick or later in the draft no one really knows that yet. But the Bears main priority this offseason is to find a franchise QB.
The Bears will draft a rookie, but the question remains in what round. Unless Pace has his guy and uses the No.3 pick, a defensive player would help out the team tremendously. Throwing rookie QB’s into the fire has not always had the best outcome. It would be smart for the Bears to have a “bridge-QB” to have the rookie learn from and become accustomed to the offense.
Brian Hoyer could be that bridge QB. Hoyer threw for six touchdowns and six interceptions in six games last season. Also, Pace said at the NFL combine, which is taking place from February 28th to March 6th, that Connor Shaw is healthy and will compete for a spot on the roster. Could he be the Bears QB next season? Other options include Mike Glennon. Glennon put up decent numbers in Tampa Bay and could very well be a good suitor in Chicago. Another name is Tyrod Taylor, who has passed for 37 touchdowns and only 12 interceptions the past two season in Buffalo.
Quarterback will be the main focus of Ryan Pace and John Fox going into free agency and especially the draft. They cannot afford to make a mistake. The QB position is the most important on an NFL team. The rebuilding process cannot hit a roadblock because people’s jobs are depending on it.