The Chicago Bears have an important offseason for the future of the franchise with a high draft pick and the potential to bolster the roster through free agency. Justin Fields will head into his third NFL season with the regime of head coach Matt Eberflus and general manager Ryan Poles heading into Year 2 with the Bears.
Chicago Bears free agency preview
Positional needs: OT, WR, DT, EDGE
Any team that has the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft has a ton of holes to fill along the roster, and the Bears are no different. Chicago needs to make a number of moves at key positions to make a significant improvement in the 2022 season, especially in the spots that could give Fields the best chance at success.
Fields was sacked far too often last season, so offensive line should be a huge priority this offseason. There are plenty of reasons for an incredibly high sack rate, but O-line play was one of them. Fields excelled in the running game but would benefit from an upgrade at the wide receiver position after the group didn’t feature many play-making options, and the passing game struggled most of the season.
On the defensive end, the Bears need to overhaul the defensive line at both the defensive end and defensive tackle spots. Chicago had one of the worst defenses in terms of pass rush as quarterbacks had all day to throw. A lot of that had to do with not having a disruptive force on the line, so that’s where the Bears need plenty of help.
Players to target
On the offensive end, the Bears would be smart to go after a wide receiver like Allen Lazard, who has proven to be a trusted player at the position. He took on a bigger role with the Green Bay Packers last season as a pass catcher, and his ability as a blocker would fit a run-first offense perfectly.
The Bears may need to make multiple moves to the offensive line, but one player in particular who stands out is offensive tackle Orlando Brown Jr. He didn’t get a long-term deal with the Kansas City Chiefs last offseason, and Chicago may need to pay a significant price, but his talent could be worth the price to shore up the line with proven talent.
Toward the defensive line, the Bears have so many options considering how many additions are needed, some of which will likely come through the draft. Some potential options that would make sense include interior defensive lineman Dalvin Tomlinson and edge rusher Jadeveon Clowney as Chicago looks to add talent at key spots on the defense.