Here's your first big move, guys and gals:
BREAKING: Former Giants TE Martellus Bennett has informed me that he will sign with the Chicago Bears tonight.— Mike Clay (@MikeClayNFL) March 12, 2013
And even more, from the new TE himself:
I'm proud to say I'll be joining my other brother @bmarshall next season. #BEARDOWN— Martellus Bennett (@JoeGryffindor) March 12, 2013
Now keep in mind, this is in principle only, as no deal is currently in place. However, it seems unlikely it would fall apart at this stage.
Aged 26 years, here's some important stats on Martellus Bennett:
6'6", 265 lbs
- 55 receptions (90 targets)
- 626 yards
- 11.4 yards/rec. average
- 35 yd long
- 5 touchdowns
- 35 first downs
This is merely the first move by the Bears in free agency, but it helps us see what some of their plans maybe. It would seem that making your first move a relatively young tight end with some upside suggests some combination of the following:
Some of the current TE personnel will be gone. (Lookin' at you, Kellen Davis)
They probably aren't drafting TE in the first round
Bennett as a player will give them actual chance, and will remove a lot of the need to adjust personnel down to down, as he can typically play all three downs. He isn't a burner, but he can block and catch, which is a step above everyone currently on the roster at that position.
We'll keep you updated as we get more. Free Agency for the Bears has truly begun!
UPDATE: 3:46 CT - Per Adam Schefter, a 4-year deal
Former Giants tight end Martellus Bennett reached agreement with Bears on a four-year deal.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 12, 2013