The Chicago Bears ended their offseason program on June 15. Here’s a look at how they fared:
Offseason goals/grade: Chicago’s top offseason priority was to upgrade the quarterback position. With Jay Cutler (retired) out of the picture after eight years atop the depth chart, the Bears signed free agent Mike Glennon for $16 million guaranteed in 2017 and drafted Mitchell Trubisky second overall. Is Glennon good enough to win games? Is Trubisky worth the second pick? Is either quarterback better than Cutler? We have no idea. Five years from now, the only thing Bears fans will remember about the 2017 offseason will be the quarterback moves orchestrated by general manager Ryan Pace. If it works, Pace will still be the GM five years from now. If it doesn’t, Pace’s successor will be tasked with cleaning up the mess. Grade: C
Move I liked: Solidifying tight end. You can make a compelling argument that the Bears are much better off at tight end after the club signed free agent Dion Sims and drafted 6-foot-6 Adam Shaheen in the second round. Sims seemed to just be scratching the surface of his potential when he left Miami, and Shaheen -- from tiny Division II Ashland University -- looked good during OTAs and minicamp. Throw a (hopefully) healthy Zach Miller into the mix, and the Bears have multiple weapons and matchup problems for opponents to deal with. Also, former undrafted free agent Ben Braunecker is pushing hard to earn a roster spot. Overall, tight end looks to be one of the strongest position groups on Chicago’s rebuilding offense.
Move I didn’t like: Letting Alshon Jeffery walk away in free agency. The Bears have nothing but question marks at wide receiver. Kevin White -- the seventh overall pick in 2015 -- has played in only four regular-season games. Markus Wheaton missed most of last year with an injury. Kendall Wright is coming off his worst season in the NFL. Cameron Meredith -- the most productive Chicago receiver in 2016 -- hurt his thumb during OTAs. Victor Cruz can play, but he hasn’t been the same player since his knee injury three seasons ago. The Bears’ decision to not even attempt to re-sign Jeffery remains a head-scratcher -- especially after spending so much at quarterback.
Biggest question still to be answered in training camp: Will Trubisky see the field as a rookie? There didn’t seem to be a huge difference between Glennon and Trubisky at minicamp -- besides the fact Glennon took first-team reps. Will Trubisky remain the No. 2 when Mark Sanchez returns from a knee injury? And how long can the Bears resist the temptation to play the second overall pick of the draft? Again, all that matters in 2017 is that the Bears properly evaluated their quarterback options. The team poured too many resources into the position to have whiffed on both Glennon and Trubisky. One needs to step up. Only time will tell who that’ll be.
Salary-cap space: $26,648,933 (source: Overthecap.com)
Undrafted rookie free agents signed: K Andy Phillips, WR Tanner Gentry, RB Joel Bouagnon, FB Freddie Stevenson, LB Alex Scearce, LB Isaiah Irving, LB Hendrick Ekpe, OL Mitchell Kirsch, DL Rashaad Coward, OL Dieugot Joseph.
Unrestricted free agents signed: QB Mark Sanchez, QB Mike Glennon, WR Markus Wheaton, WR Kendall Wright, CB Prince Amukamara, S Quintin Demps, CB Marcus Cooper, RB Benjamin Cunningham, CB B.W. Webb, FB Michael Burton, LB Dan Skuta, OL Taylor Boggs, DL Kapron Lewis-Moore, DL John Jenkins, OL Tom Compton, OL Bradley Sowell, WR Victor Cruz, WR Rueben Randle, TE Dion Sims, DL Jaye Howard, WR Titus Davis.
Restricted free agents signed: None
Players acquired via trade: None