The NFL’s trade deadline doesn’t conjure up the kind of feelings that we’re used to during baseball season or the transaction wires awaiting basketball and hockey deals. However, there’s been growing chatter in recent days regarding potential players who could be dangled by their respective teams and available at the right price (including the Bears!)
For example, a blockbuster went down Monday night when the New England Patriots traded quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (remember all the Bears connections this winter?) to the San Francisco 49ers for a second-round pick. Earlier in the day, we discussed the possibility of Indianapolis Colts receiver T.Y. Hilton being available, while also tracking the off-again (and on-again) status of Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Martavis Bryant.
After the Miami Dolphins traded running back Jay Ajayi to the Philadelphia Eagles for a fourth-round pick, receiver Jarvis Landry – who is a free agent at year’s end – will likely be a name thrown out on the rumor mill before this afternoon’s 3 p.m. deadline too.
As is the case with every trade deadline ever, we already have conflicting reports:
The Miami Dolphins may not be finished today. Jarvis Landry is available for the right compensation. Not giving him away though.
— Armando Salguero (@ArmandoSalguero) October 31, 2017
Source: I'm told #Dolphins WR Jarvis Landry was informed this morning the team said they are not trading him. Hopefully word still matters.
— Josina Anderson (@JosinaAnderson) October 31, 2017
Only a few hours left to get some deals done.
- Even though the Bears already made a move to acquire a receiver, it would be nice to get rookie quarterback Mitch Trubisky some more help on the outside. Perhaps another pass catching target could help Trubisky better attack blitzing defenses. Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune explains how the rookie couldn’t make the Saints pay for their aggressiveness in attacking him. The combination of an aggressive defense and a noisy Superdome spelled doom for Trubisky, who was pressured on nearly half his pass attempts, sacked twice, and took seven quarterback hits.
- Over at CBS Chicago, Dan Pompei concedes Trubisky received little help from his receivers on Sunday. Trubisky’s targets struggled to create separation and a handful of drops stunted the progress of several drives. Pompei added that Dowell Loggains’ play calling didn’t help matters much, noting the offensive coordinator’s pass plays on 3rd-and-short (as well as 4th-and-short) in the fourth quarter were “baffling” and “indefensible.”
- Pompei is unsure whether Trubisky’s misses are a problem with the quarterback’s accuracy or the receivers he throws to, but it’s likely a combination of both. Trubisky’s inexperience (and possibly rust from not throwing the ball much in his first three games?) is showing, which is why we believe the Bears’ ultra-conservative game-plans have backfired in developing the rookie quarterback.
- JJ Stankevitz of NBC Sports Chicago handed out grades after the Bears’ 20-12 loss to the Saints in Week 8. As expected, the front seven, led by Akiem Hicks and the defensive line, passed with flying colors (A- grade), while the team’s linebackers, led by Danny Trevathan and a surprisingly impressive performance from Christian Jones, weren’t too far behind (B grade).
- While the Bears will miss Jerrell Freeman’s elite-level play for the rest of the season because of a 10-game PED suspension, Jones has emerged as a capable fill-in for Nick Kwiatkoski – who was a capable fill-in for Freeman and Trevathan as a rookie in 2016. Kwiatkoski missed four weeks with a pectoral injury, but has been active the last two weeks. However, the second-year linebacker has played just one defensive snap since returning to the active roster.
- The Bears should be thankful to be on bye this week, because no team needs one like one in search of some positive news from the health front, an offensive identity, and rest for a defense that has been playing out of its mine. Head Coach John Fox said rest, recovery, and self-evaluation were priorities during the bye week. Ideally, going back to the drawing board with an offense game plan is on the list too.
- Daily Herald columnist Mike Imrem takes it a step further, offering up the idea that the next step for the Bears is to get a young, offensive-minded head coach. Imrem credits Fox for making progress with the team handed to him, and the veteran head coach deserves applause for simply leading the Bears out of the Marc Trestman era. However, Imrem believes the Bears need to travel in a different direction in order to get the most out of the team’s investment in Trubisky.
- For what it’s worth, Fox is reportedly on the hot seat … even though his defensive coordinator will be a hot commodity if he hits the open market. Then again, there’s always a looming rumor regarding Jim Harbaugh’s possible return to the NFL.