The Chicago Bears want to make sure they find protection for their franchise quarterback. Going all-in on offensive tackle Terron Armstead could be what they need to do.
Tell me if you’ve heard this before — Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Poles wants to strengthen the offensive line so their franchise quarterback, Justin Fields, is well protected. We’ve been hearing this ad nauseam throughout the offseason.
The reason we keep hearing this is because the previous general manager, Ryan Pace, seemed to forget the offensive line. Season after season, it seemed that we kept talking about how the unit struggles and, as a result, the offense struggles.
Therefore, when we see the replacement step up and practically make an announcement about the line being a priority, we get excited. Heck, it was practically the first words out of his mouth.
Of course, we’ll all hold our breaths waiting to see if that actually happens. For now, we can only take Poles’ word.
One way for Poles to show how big a priority the offensive line is would be for him to go after top free agents. Yes, he wants to build the team through the draft. However, the Bears have two young guys already on the line. It’s time to add a top-notch veteran who could command the unit’s attention and lead them into success.
Three-time Pro Bowler could be the answer
ESPN recently had an article making bold moves for each NFL team. They suggested the Bears go all-in on three-time Pro Bowl left tackle Terron Armstead.
Armstead is likely the top free agent lineman available. He is among the best overall tackles.
This is what they said:
With a bona fide left tackle in Terron Armstead on the market and a fresh coaching staff in the building, the Bears might be better served abandoning (Teven) Jenkins at left tackle… [I]twould play into what their young quarterback Justin Fields needs the most: pass protection.
The reasoning for this is that Teven Jenkins, entering his second season, didn’t really get much playing time in 2021. He suffered a back injury that kept him out of nearly the entire season. He came back late, but former head coach Matt Nagy didn’t play him much.
Additionally, Jenkins played on the right side in college. Asking him to move to the left side and learning on the job would be difficult, even when healthy.
Now, the Bears could have Jenkins play his natural position and have a stud protect Fields’ blind side.
Last season, Armstead played on 468 snaps. He committed three penalties and allowed just one sack. Penalties and sacks really killed the Bears’ line in 2021.
Yes, he missed time due to injury but it appears that he’s over that and is healthy once again.
Signing Armstead would take big bucks
Armstead comes at a hefty price tag. He could command $20 million. The Bears are in a position where they could spend that money on an important position. Of course, that means they’ll have less to spend on wide receiver, another huge need.
The New Orleans Saints are in salary cap hell and won’t be able to afford Armstead. He’ll be available to teams looking for a great left tackle but at a premium price.
Poles mentioned how he prefers to find bargains after the first wave of free agency. That is where he could find some good wide receivers. The priority is keeping Fields upright. Fields showed in his rookie season that when given time, he could make big plays.
Signing Armstead would sure be a bold move. It would also show, though, how serious Poles is about building the offensive line and putting Fields in the best position to succeed.
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