Twitter sure starts more than it finishes…
For the last week, many Bears fans (not all) have been hung up on the idea of reuniting quarterback Jay Cutler with former Denver Broncos teammate Brandon Marshall, who’s currently under contract with the Miami Dolphins through 2014. And why not? The dynamic duo would certainly be fun to watch! Cutler and Marshall had the following exchange on twitter, which set off the discussion:
Of course, we know that’s indicative of nothing (I hope you know that) and is nothing more than a friendly exchange between former teammates. We certainly know that Jay’s not pulling the trigger on blockbuster trade deals at Halas Hall—even if he, himself, was one. And then today, Cutler tweeted this in response to a fan:
Don’t get me wrong, the conversation is a perfectly fine one to have, so long as it’s kept in perspective. Major trades are rare in the NFL these days, and in a year where the free agent class of wide receivers is as deep as it will be in 2012, it makes far more sense to think the Bears will attempt to fill their WR needs in free agency and the draft, rather than via trade. A trade would, however, remain a backup plan.
But any trade for Marshall would likely involve multiple draft picks, as well as picking up the remainder of his $23 million in guaranteed cash (and then some), along with all the baggage that comes with Marshall’s antics—something the Chicago Bears are VERY devoted to avoiding.
But in order to gain some much needed perspective, I reached out to some contacts in Miami to try and get their sense of what kind of value the Dolphins would actually place on Marshall. While the feedback was varied, the overall sense was that he’s not going anywhere.
One source told me, “Considering [the Dolphins] gave up two second-round picks, plus $23 million guaranteed to get him, I'd say he could be had for something less than that—a second plus a four … maybe. But the cap hit on both sides would be tough.” Another source indicated the absolute bottom for Marshall would likely be a second-round draft pick.
A third individual put the odds at slim to none. “They're going to keep him for next year. He's still their most dangerous weapon, and you can't just replace a guy like that easily. The only way he doesn't return to the Dolphins next year is if he screws up again and has another embarrassing off-field episode that forces the Dolphins to cut him. But barring that, I can't imagine the Bears will offer anything substantive to make the Dolphins trade Marshall away.”
Giving up those kinds of draft picks, coupled with that kind of money, for a 27-year old Marshall with off the field issues, is not just a pipe dream—it would be idiotic. It’s not that the Bears don’t need to make a move at WR, but they can do it in free agency without giving up ANY draft picks and by spending less money.
Besides, Bears’ fans, what do we need Brandon Marshall for when we have the Cutty-Bennett connection?! Kidding, kidding…