Brandon Marshall announced today (On “The View”) that he and the Bears agreed to a 3-year/$30 million contract extension.
Marshall expressed confidence that he and the Bears would be able to come to an agreement. “If I don’t have a contract, I’ll picket Halas Hall… I’m not going anywhere.” He also said he wasn’t going to look for the $15-$16 million that other receivers have gotten.
Marshall has had two of his most productive seasons in his time with the Bears. He has 218 catches for 2,803 yards and 23 touchdowns. He and Alshon Jeffery have become one of the best wide receiver tandems in the NFL.
Marshall announced after the signing that he was donating $1 million to mental health centers. He was diagnosed with Borderline Disorder and has been on a mission to bring awareness to and treatment for mental health.
Emery continues his masterful offseason. It began almost immediately after last season ended. He signed Jay Cutler to a seven year contract. He also signed Tim Jennings to a four year deal. He then wrapped up Matt Slauson to a four year deal.
When the free agency period opened up, Emery went out and signed Lamarr Houston, Ryan Mundy, M.D. Jennings, Israel Idonije and Willie Young, among others. Later, he got a gem when he signed Jared Allen, one of the top pass rushers in the league.
In the draft, Emery went out and drafted Kyle Fuller, one of the top rated cornerbacks in college. He also did a good job filling positions of need (defensive tackle, safety, backup running back). The players he picked up on defense are all versatile enough to play multiple positions, so there is better depth, which was a problem last season.
One aspect of Emery’s signings that have gone largely unnoticed is how the signings affect the salary cap. Yes, Cutler’s deal is for $126 million, but the guarantee is $54 million, and it basically came down to a three-year, $54 million deal if it doesn’t work out. He also has a clause that allows the Bears to restructure his deal to free up cap space, which they did to have the money to sign Allen.
Even though Houston signed a five-year, $35 million contract, the Bears have an out that could make the deal either a one-year, $9 million deal, or a two-year, $15 million contract.
The Bears have Brandon Marshall, one of the top wide receivers in the game, at a real bargain. He is now signed for four years at less than $40 million. That is a bargain for the Bears. Marshall is the only player in the NFL to gain over 1,000 yards for seven consecutive seasons. He is also the only one to have 80 catches or more for each of the last seven seasons. He tied the NFL record with five 100-catch seasons and the only one in history to have 100-catch seasons with two teams.
Emery has been on a mission to bring a winner to Chicago. In his third season now, he has almost completely redone the roster. He is going a long way to changing the atmosphere around Halas Hall.