Now that labor talks are heating up and a deal is possible before the 4th of July- maybe even this week in Chicago- its time to start thinking about free agency and trades. Free Agency will follow up on a new deal between the owners and players(whenever that happens).
Although our Bears had a pretty good draft, there are still three positions I think we need an upgrade at: WR, CB, and OG. Here are some guys that we can aquire through free agency and trade that will immediately upgrade those positions:
Offensive guard: The ends for the future are-hopefully-set with Carimi and Webb. the inside of the line is a problem now. Chris Williams still needs to adjust to LG(assuming that's where he plays in '11), Olin Kruetz, as we know, in a free agent, and Roberto Garza is old, had a terrible year last year(proof? He was on the No-Pro team last year, according to the Yahoo Sports blog Shutdown Corner), and will probably just get worse as he winds down his career. I think we should re-sign Kruetz, keep Chris Williams at LG where he should improve, and find a replacement for Garza at RG. Here are some free agent guards that I would like to see the Bears bring in:
Carl Nicks(NO): Definitely someone that you would want to go after. But will the Sainits really let him go?
Kyle Koiser(DAL): He is injury-prone, but he would be a good upgrade.
Robert Gallery(OAK): Underrated player because he is pretty much the only good lineman on a poor O-Line
Alan Faneca(ARZ): He is over 30 and his best days are behind him, but he is still a future hall of famer and will not only give us an upgrade, but can help the younger guys on the line get better. The last time that we brought in a future hall of fame veteran O-Lineman, (don't make me mention his name again, Orlando Pace) It didn't go too well, but I will give it another shot especially when we're talking about Alan Faneca.
Wide Reciever: Let's face it: our recievers are a part of the fact that Jay Cutler hasn't been as productive with us as he was in Denver. The Devin Hester experiment at WR has been explosive at times, but not so good at others. Johnny Knox had a pretty good year, but he was inconsistent and not completely ready to play the #1 WR position. He can really benefit from playing the #2 WR position alongside a talented veteran WR. Earl Bennent is definetly our best in the slot. I think Hester should get a bit of a limited role in the recieving game. We should bring in one of the following to play the #1 WR position:
Terrell Owens(CIN): I dont care about his age-37 years- and i dont care about his nagging and off-field issues. Just look at his stats from last year as a 36 year-old: 72 receptions for 983 yards and 9 TDs in just 12 games! Can he be the answer?
Santonio Holmes(NYJ): Also has off-field issues. But he is fast, talented, and still fairly young.
Braylon Edwards(NYJ): It appeards unlikely that the Jets can keep both Edwards and Holmes with all the other free agents that they have. Although he is not as fast as Holmes, he is bigger and more fit to play the #1 WR position which he has played his entire career. Drops are a concern for him though
Plaxico Burress(FA): Was a good reciever before he went to prison. He said he played and got better in jail playing with people that didn't know how to throw spirals. Multiple teams-including the Bears- are interested in signing him after seeing Michael Vick become an MVP-caliber player after being in prison. This is the guy that I think the bears should go after. He's tall and would fit well into our system.
Steve Smith(CAR): Reportedly on the trade block. A lot of writers say that he would be the perfect fit here in Chicago with Jay Cutler slinging passes to him even though he is 32 and dealt with injuries last year. But recent reports have said that Cam Newton has been pleading him to stay in Carolina and trade talks have died down. But why not try to make a package deal for him? He is the guy that I think we should try to acquire if we dont get anyone in free agency.
Randy Moss(TEN): Nah. I think he's just too risky and the Bears aren't really interested...
Cornerback: Charles Tillman is getting up in age and at this point in his career, it would be better for him to slide back to the #2 CB position. As much as I respect Tim Jennings, he's just too small. D.J. Moore is solid at the #3 position, but the Bears need something that they haven't had in a while: a shutdown corner. Here are some free agents that are pretty good examples of that:
Nnamdi Asomugha(OAK): Best FA available. Can the Bears make the free agent splash again?
Ike Taylor(PIT): Very underrated shutdown corner. He still has a few good seasons left at age 30.
Caros Rodgers(WAS): Shutdown corner that cant catch.
Other free agents to consider or re-sign:
Cullen Jenkins(GB): Our DE positions are set, but Jenkins is big enough(6-2, 305 pounds) and strong enough to play DT. He played DE in Green Bay because B.J. Raji played the NT position. We can bring him in to play DT next to Stephen Paea or Henry Melton. Plus, it would be nice to sign him just to make the Packers D weaker.
Daniel Manning(CHI): PLEASE re-sign him even if its just for special teams. Has developed into one of the best kick returners in the game. Why mess up our special teams unit?
Brad Maynard(CHI): Big part of our amazing special teams unit. One of the best-if not the best-at pinning opponents inside the 20. No good replacement in free agency.
Kawika Mitchell(NO): A good pass rushing LB.
Pisa Tinoisamoa(CHI): Re-sign him for another year? Had a good year in 2010, although injuries are still a major concern.
This is my opinion on free agents that the Bears should go after. You can voice your opinions by leaving a comment please.