We all love following the Bears, and unless you've been sleeping under a rock, you've probably noticed they started free agency with a bang. Apparently any comments about not going hog wild in free agency were merely to throw people off the trail, because the Bears went nuts agreeing to sign Julius Peppers, Brandon Manu Manu the slender, and Chester Taylor.
Personally, I love their willingness to spend money in the uncapped year. I haven't read the money on Manu's deal, but Peppers getting 40 million guaranteed and most of Taylor's money is guaranteed in the first year. It's great that the Bears went out to make something happen, but I wonder about the personnel they choose.
Okay Peppers is the best FA available and fills a dire need. I'm not arguing with his signing, nor am I going to argue on the money, because I'm not an NFL cap guru.
However, what's the deal with Brandon Manumaleuna? I guess the Martz system just wants a blocking TE, but we have two pretty valuable TEs and just paid for a third guy. Granted, Olsen is probably toast now, but overall getting a draft pick for Olsen + Manu seems like an overall downgrade in talent to me.
Then Chester Taylor to low-end RB money? Look, Taylor's made a great career for himself as a change of pace back, and Forte was nothing special behind a terrible line last season, but that just seems like a reach to me. I don't feel a whole lot better about the Bears backs with Taylor in there and would have been content to keep Forte, bring in a value option for a change of pace guy and actually improve the receiving core or offensive line.
After the big spending spree the Bears are still lacking WRs, Safeties, and offensive line talent [though the switch to a blocking TE should help the line]. We'll see how the rest of the plan works out, but while the Bears made a big splash, I see them only upgrading 1 of four or five desperation areas while adding in guys to areas that weren't as big of needs.
However, that's just me, you Bears experts can chime in.