The Chicago Bears could be unexpected beneficiaries of the New England Patriots’ trade of Rob Gronkowski. With a boatload of picks in the middle rounds, perhaps the two teams come up with a trade to help both of them.

The New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers rocked the NFL with a surprise trade. The Patriots sent future Hall of Fame tight end (and now unretired) Rob Gronkowski and a seventh-round pick to Tampa for a fourth-round pick. While both Tampa and New England are happy with the deal, the Chicago Bears could be a beneficiary as well.

After the trade, the Patriots now own five picks in the third and fourth rounds (three in the third and two in the fourth). The Bears have two picks in the second round, but after trading their compensatory pick for Nick Foles, they have no picks in the third or fourth.

With some of the talent that could be had in those two rounds, the Bears need to get back into one or both of those rounds. To emphasize the matter more, Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace has a good history of drafting in the middle of the draft.

The Bears and Patriots have worked out a trade in the past two years. In 2018, the Bears received the Pats’ 51st pick for their 105th and a 2019 second-round pick. Additionally, in 2019, the Bears traded their 87th, 162nd, and their 2020 fourth-round (#125th) picks for New England’s 73rd pick.

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Those deals worked well for the Bears as they picked wide receiver Anthony Miller and running back David Montgomery. Of course, the Patriots used their picks to wheel and deal for other picks.

Pace has worked out at least one trade in every draft since he came to Chicago. When he falls for a player he’ll move heaven and earth to get him. Furthermore, with some of the needs the Bears have this year, they need to pick up a few more picks. They currently have seven picks but none in those middle rounds where they really need to pick. Also, they don’t have a first-round pick, so they’ll pick at #43 and #50 but won’t pick again until #163. If that ends up happening, the Bears will miss out on a lot of prospects who could help.

One thing to consider with Pace is that his seat keeps warming. In his five seasons as Chicago Bears general manager, he owns a record of 34-46. The Bears only have one double-digit win season and one playoff appearance. After a 12-4 season and a division title in 2018, the team regressed to 8-8 in 2019. Some of his early draft picks like Kevin White, Leonard Floyd, and Mitchell Trubisky, haven’t exactly turned the team’s fortunes around. White and Floyd are gone, and there is a chance Trubisky might also be gone after this weekend.

Pace needs to trade and acquire more picks. With his history with working with the Patriots, the two should be natural partners.

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