Chicago Bears: Khalil Mack deal is almost complete

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

Chicago Bears rumors will have fans thinking it’s Christmas morning when they wake up today, as the Bears have traded for linebacker Khalil Mack.

In what can only be called a stunning move, the Chicago Bears rumors are swirling this morning that they are sending two first-round picks, reportedly, to the Oakland Raiders for holdout linebacker Khalil Mack. This is simply other-worldly because these kinds of trades just don’t happen. Mack is arguably a top-three defensive player in the whole league, and to see him moved at all is shocking. To see him head to the blue and orange is going to have tailgates for the home opener on the 15th starting in about two hours.

Mack on the Bears defense makes this one of the scarier units in the league. The one question about it heading into the season was could they get to the quarterback enough. We knew the run defense was there. Now Kirk Cousins, Matthew Stafford, and even Aaron Rodgers are going to have nightmares about facing this defense.

This puts Mack, perhaps the best pass-rusher in the league, on the opposite side of Leonard Floyd, and before this, the only thing between Floyd and a breakout season was his health. Which one do you want to leave single-blocked? It’s ok, take your time, we’ll just be over here giggling.

Combine those two with Eddie Goldman, Akiem Hicks, Roquan Smith, and Danny Trevathan, and the Bears have just about as many weapons in the front-seven as any team in the league. Much like the Baltimore Ravens’ defense of yore, this could look like 11 billiard balls being thrown at an offense when it’s fully healthy and fully operational.

This certainly adds some pressure to the Bears, as with this kind of move you have to believe a playoff berth–for a team that still went 5-11 last year, mind–is the minimum requirement, But hey, that’s the good kind of pressure. Unless you’re the New England Patriots (and you cheat), windows for success in the NFL only last a handful of years.

The Bears are opening theirs, with the kind of defense that we’ll talk about when we have only a smattering of marbles rolling around in our heads and we wear bathrobes all day.

Yes, Mack is going to make all the money in the world, as he should. Yes, it could be something of a cap headache down the road. But the Bears don’t have to pay Mitchell Trubisky for a few years, and it’s only after you pay your QB that the true headaches begin. Danny Trevathan also comes off the books after 2019 and could be let go after this one if Roquan Smith looks like he can handle the role (which he will). It can be danced around, at least for a couple years.

The losing of two first-rounders hurts because that makes it harder to create depth. But you use first-round picks to get players of Mack’s quality, just more cheaply. So it’s a bonus first-round pick, and whether Bears fans want to admit it or not GM Ryan Pace’s drafting record is actually on the good side. He can work with what he has, and player’s of Mack’s ability just don’t come on the trade market all that often.

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This Bears defense is now set up to be an infinity gauntlet. There are going to be days when it simply tears offenses apart. No, it doesn’t help Trubisky’s learning curve or questions about the offensive line. But their margin for error just got a lot bigger.

This is a huge day.