Ranking the Chicago Bears offseason needs as free agency heats up

(Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)
(Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images) /
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David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
David Banks-USA TODAY Sports /

New Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Poles’ work to reshape the roster has been kicked up a notch.

That is because teams are currently negotiating with unrestricted free agents. Official contracts cannot be signed until the start of the new NFL’s league year on March 16th.

Poles heads into the offseason with a good amount of cap space to spend according to Overthecap.com.

He will need to spend every penny of that space wisely to remake a team coming off a 22-27 stretch over the past three seasons. A stretch that led to the firing of Ryan Pace as general manager and Matt Nagy as head coach.

Poles would not be here if the Chicago Bears did not go 6-11 last season with a flawed and aging roster.

Poles has already made some bold moves ahead of free agency starting. He traded away Khalil Mack. He has released Tarik Cohen and Eddie Goldman. There are plans to release Danny Trevathan.

Now he must use his available methods to upgrade the roster and get the Chicago Bears pointed in the right direction.

Those options are…

  • Tier one free agents: The big-name, star players or young unrestricted free agents with big potential that will sign within the first week
  • Tier two and three free agents: NFL veterans who typically sign smaller deals after the first wave. Also played hoping to bounce back from a disappointing season or injury. Players who may get cut later in the offseason.
  • The NFL draft
  • Trades
  • Bears re-sign their own free agents.

Another reason the Chicago Bears roster needs an overhaul is the defense is switching from a 3-4 base defense to a 4-3 base defense under new head coach Matt Eberflus. That means a couple of positions require a different skill set or body type.

Finally, the Chicago Bears had 27 unrestricted free agents when free agency started.

Not everyone will or should be re-signed so some players will have to be replaced.

Poles will have to prioritize his needs and figure out what five methods of filling them are the best way to take.