Bears ranking of the top five salary cap offers for 2020: Tashaun Gipson is the perfect partner for Eddie Jackson

Since they decided to switch places at the top of the 2017 draft to select Mitchell Trubisky to replace Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson, the Bears have been reduced to a national coup. Even his only successful season since that draft ended shamefully with what was immediately known as “the double bond.” While the Bears managed to record a 20-12 record since Ryan Pace hired Matt Nagy as the team’s coach, you wouldn’t know based on the speech that engulfed the team in recent years.

They have enough tight wings to launch a full offense! They traded for Nick Foles! Jimmy Graham signed!

Many of the criticisms are well deserved. Pace has made mistakes that disrupt the franchise. But the reviews don’t do the Bears’ list justice either. Outside of the quarterback position, which remains highly problematic even after the acquisition of Foles, the Bears actually have a talented collection of players. Hence, how they managed to win 20 games in the past two seasons. The Bears are loaded in positions other than the quarterback, particularly in defense.

With that in mind, we decided to take a look at five players on the Bears’ roster who represent the biggest salary cap bargains. For the many signings Pace has made, and there have been a few, he has also done well to build a roster that is good enough to win eight games without a competent quarterback game, which is no easy feat. Bargains, in fact, exist on the Bears’ list.

Before we get to the five bargains, it’s important to note that, for the purposes of this article, we are only watching the 2020 season. That means players like Eddie Jackson and Robert Quinn, who have signed expensive long-term deals with the team, are eligible because they have relatively small capitalization successes in 2020. If this article looked at salary capitalization offerings in the next five years, Quinn and Jackson wouldn’t be at it. But because we’re only watching next season, they made the cut.

Just lost: James Daniels ($ 1,895,498), Anthony Miller ($ 1,460,100), Bilal Nichols ($ 824,870).

All cap figures via Spotrac.

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1. S Eddie Jackson

2020 salary cap blow: $ 3,716,450

Already one of the league’s best insurers at the age of 26, Jackson was rewarded in January with a contract extension that made him the highest-paid security in football. His new deal pays him an average of $ 14.6 million per season. But it’s still a bargain for another year.

In 2020, Jackson is capped at just $ 3.7 million. That is absolute steal for the Bears. For $ 3.7 million, they’re getting a player averaging 49 solo tackles, 2.7 tackles to loss, 1.3 forced fumbles, 8.7 passes defended and most importantly, 3.3 interceptions per season. In 2018, he was named All-Pro of the first team. While he couldn’t maintain that level of production in 2019, as all of the Bears’ defense fell back, it remained one of the best securities in the league in a very good Bears defense. In a league of happy passes, he’s one of the best takeaway generation assurances, as evidenced by his six interceptions in 2018. He managed to score three career touchdowns despite playing on defense.

This will be the last season Jackson is considered a bargain. In 2021, his capitalization hit rises to $ 11.5 million. Still, the first three seasons of his career indicate that he’ll be worth every penny for years to come.


2. ILB Roquan Smith

2020 salary cap coup: $ 5,129,227

The 8th pick in the 2018 draft, Smith is entering the third year of his rookie contract, making it an easy choice here. Over the course of two seasons, Smith has displayed the traits of a top 10 linebacker. He has an average of 111 combined tackles, 6.5 tackles to loss, 3.5 quarterback hits, 3.5 sacks, 3.5 passes protected and one interception per season. Fast with big instincts, allowing him to track downfield and side-to-side pass catchers, and a terrific blitzer, Smith is set for a third-year breakaway. And in its third season, it will only cost the Bears $ 5.1 million.

That is a bargain. Eventually, the Bears will have to pay Smith money long-term like they did Jackson. But for now, as he plays the final years of his rookie contract, Smith will remain one of the best values ​​on the Bears’ list.


3. OLB Robert Quinn

2020 salary cap coup: $ 6,100,000

Signed for a five-year, $ 70 million contract in free agency, Quinn, 30, will likely turn out to be an overpayment in a few seasons. But in the short term, it was a tremendous signing for the Bears, who needed another passing runner in front of Khalil Mack after they struggled to constantly generate pressure in 2019. For as much attention as DeMarcus Lawrence has received in Dallas, it was Quinn who emerged as The Cowboys’ best passing runner last season with 11.5 team sacks and 22 quarterback hits. In his nine-year career, he’s averaging 8.9 sacks per season. That will work for a Bears defense that also has Mack, Akiem Hicks and Eddie Goldman up front. Quinn’s addition is the reason the Bears could have a better defense than in 2018.

Quinn will get expensive soon. In 2021, her cap hit the balloons at $ 14.7 million. But in 2020, it only costs $ 6.1 million, making it a short-term bargain.


4. S Tashaun Gipson

2020 salary cap coup: $ 750,000

In the past two seasons, it has been difficult for the Bears to identify a long-term partner in Jackson’s secure position. First, Adrian Amos ran out in free agency. Then Ha Ha Clinton-Dix departed in free agency after just one season with the Bears. For a time, the Bears made no move to replace Clinton-Dix, which made sense. The Bears didn’t have a lot of top space this offseason. They could not afford any important name.

They ended up making a heady move in the second stage of free agency, having Gipson join them in a one-year deal that includes a cap of just $ 750,000. For a trustworthy veteran, it was outright theft and the exact kind of cheap deal the Bears needed. At Gipson, the Bears are gaining safety that is long-lasting (he has missed two games in the past four seasons) and consistently strong (42 solo tackles, six defended passes and 2.3 interceptions per season since 2016). Again, that’s exactly what they needed.

By exercising patience in free agency, the Bears found a capable partner for Jackson at a perfect price.


5. ILB Danny Trevathan

2020 salary cap coup: $ 4,168,750

With Danny Trevathan and Nick Kwiatkoski on expired contracts, the Bears made the decision to get Trevathan back and let Kwiatkoski sign a big deal with the Raiders in free agency. To retain Trevathan, the Bears didn’t actually have to pay a huge price, giving him a three-year contract worth $ 21.8 million. For a Trevathan caliber linebacker, not great, but always good, it’s a good deal. He will continue to pair off excellently with Smith as linebacker. And in 2020, it will only cost the Bears just over $ 4 million.

Since joining the Bears in 2016, Trevathan has played at a high level. The key is to stay on the field. He has missed 18 games in the past four seasons. If you continue to lose games, the extension won’t look as good. But if Trevathan finally stays on the field, it will be a bargain for the price the Bears gave him. Without Kwiatkoski as a viable option behind him in the depth chart, there is more pressure on Trevathan to play an entire season. In 2018, the only time Trevathan completed a 16-game season in Chicago, he had 102 combined tackles, eight tackles to loss, four quarterback hits, two sacks, six passes protected and two interceptions.

At full strength, he is a complete linebacker with no obvious gaps in his game. For Trevathan, it’s about staying on the field.