A Laviska Shenault trade could be in mix for the Chicago Bears

Chicago Bears (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images) /

The first day of this year’s NFL free agency frenzy was a wild one, but not necessarily for the Chicago Bears.

It was a day where we saw the Jacksonville Jaguars, specifically, spend like it was going out of style. The Jaguars spent a huge chunk of change on Christian Kirk — a contract which caused the wide receiver market to come to a complete haunt for about 18 hours.

Beyond Kirk’s deal, Jacksonville signed a few other guys but made sure to add a lot of talent around Trevor Lawrence, bringing in Evan Engram and Zay Jones as additional weapons for their second-year quarterback.

Because Jacksonville signed Kirk and Jones, the latest rumor now has the team moving on from young wide receiver Laviska Shenault, who is just entering his third year as a pro after being the 42nd overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

The Chicago Bears played it cool when free agency began, but a trade for Laviska Shenault could certainly help their cause.

We saw several wide receivers go off the board on Day 1, with a few like JuJu Smith-Schuster and Marquez Valdes-Scantling still available. But, a player like Shenault would be an interesting add for the Bears.

Poles was clearly going to be patient and not go above his price point on any player during the first huge day of free agency. He’s focused on building this thing the right way, especially when looking at next year. The Bears might have the most cap space out of any NFL franchise in 2023, so they’ll play the slow game under Poles.

Back to Shenault, who would be an exciting, young weapon that fits exactly what Matt Eberflus wants in his incoming players. Eberflus wants quick, speedy guys who can run — and Shenault fits that profile.

Shenault is a quick-footed offensive weapon who can line up in the back field or the slot. He’s perfect for a young quarterback like Justin Fields, who needs to work on getting the ball out quicker. Shenault does a great job getting himself open in a hurry, and Fields’ development would accelerate because of a player like that.

Over two years, Shenault has absorbed 179 targets and he hasn’t even been the number one guy. He’s just someone an offense can get the ball to quickly, and he’ll look to make moves down field to gain additional yardage.

In his first two seasons as a pro, Shenault has caught 121 passes for 1,219 yards and five touchdowns. Those numbers hardly matter, though, as he’s been in one of the league’s most abysmal offenses. Coming to Chicago, where the Bears are looking to revamp their offense and modernize it a bit, Shenault could end up being a big part of it.

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The fact Shenault is still on his rookie deal helps, too, and Poles should absolutely be on the phone with Jacksonville as we speak. Not spending a ton of money while getting a guy who could come in and be a threat as a number three option? Sign us up.