The Chicago Bears don’t have many key players coming out of contract, but of the few that are, there are two starters among them. Safety Adrian Amos and nickleback (yes that’s basically a starter these days) Bryce Callahan. The Bears have the option of using the franchise tag on one of these players, but with the safety tag expected to be around $12 million and the corner tag expected to be around $16 million. don’t count on it.
The transition tag is an option as well, but at $10M and $14M respectively, I don’t think those are in play either.
Teams can start announcing their tagged players on February 19, with the deadline to do so being March 5.
NFL.com doesn’t think the Bears will use their tag this year either, and they placed Callahan in their No Projected Tag list.
It’s unlikely the Bears would seriously consider paying Callahan more than $15 million, but I include him here because it’s not that crazy and he’s a candidate to get a sneaky-huge contract in free agency. Slot cornerback is now a starting position, and Callahan is coming off an excellent year.
Pro Football Talk echos that sentiment in saying, “There’s no one due to become a free agent who would or should merit serious tag consideration.”
Here’s the remaining list of unrestricted free agents for the Bears that could (but won’t) get tagged.
Kevin White WR
Michael Burton FB
Bryan Witzmann G
Zach Miller TE
Daniel Brown TE
Benny Cunningham RB
Eric Kush G/C
Pat O’Donnell P
Josh Bellamy WR
Aaron Lynch OLB
Nicholas Williams DE
Marcus Williams CB
Back to Amos and Callahan, there are some rumors popping up about the Denver Broncos having interest in each player due to their connection with Vic Fangio who is now Denver’s head coach.
If allowed to hit the open market I would expect both players to garner some interest as both have performed well the last couple of years. The Bears likely have a number in mind that they’d want each back at and if I were guessing, I’d say that Callahan is a higher priority.