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No one should be untouchable when trading for a franchise quarterback

NFL: DEC 13 Texans at Bears Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

If you don’t have an above average quarterback in the NFL, your odds of winning anything are significantly hampered.

This isn’t the 1980s.

Hell, this isn’t even the early 2000s. The chances of seeing another Trent Dilfer led Super Bowl champion are slim to none in this era of the NFL. Every new rule implemented in the last decade has benefitted the offense. The NFL wants exciting games with splashy plays, and a 13 to 10 defensive struggle isn’t their idea of sexy.

Tackle the quarterback too hard, that’s a flag. Land on the quarterback after a tackle, that’s a flag. Inadvertently hit the quarterback on the head while reaching out to tackle him, yep, that’s a flag too.

There’s a reason why weekly point spreads move depending on the availability of the starting quarterback, and there’s a reason why all Super Bowl betting futures are predicated on which teams have quality and stability at the quarterback position.

Just run down any list of legit Super Bowl contenders every year and the line between the haves and the have nots is also the line between teams that have QBs and those with questions surrounding that spot.

This is why nothing matters until you have that position figured out.

The Houston Chronicles’ John McClain, who is one the most plugged in Houston Texans beat writers around, seems to think the starting point in any Deshaun Watson trade would be something along the lines of two first-round draft picks, two second-round draft picks, and a couple young defensive starters.

The Chicago Bears will most definitely be in the mix when it comes to upgrading at quarterback in the coming weeks, and since Watson is the premier QB on the market, I’d expect the Bears to get a package together to land him. I still have my doubts that their offer will be anywhere near the best on the table, but if that offer is several draft picks and a couple young defenders like Bilal Nichols, Roquan Smith, Jaylon Johnson, or Eddie Jackson, then so be it.

There should be no untouchable players on your roster when the only quarterback you have under contract is Nick Foles.

Or when you haven’t had a consistently good quarterback since the 1940s.

Or when you’ve never had a 4,000 yard passer in the history of your franchise.

Chicago’s franchise record for passing yards in a season is 3,838 from Erik Kramer in 1995. That was a real nice season for Kramer back then, but even in that era it wasn’t special.

If there’s really a path for the Bears to get Watson, and again, I just don’t see it happening, but if there is, the Bears need to get it done.

Losing a couple young defenders would suck, but an inside linebacker never moved the needle for a contending team.

It would hurt losing those number one picks too, but the Rams haven’t had a first round pick since 2016 and they’ve had four straight winning seasons, with three playoff appearances and an NFC Championship in that time, and that’s with average QB play.

Your draft picks are assets that you use to use to move up or down the board, so if you get the QB, you them spend your early picks on the offensive line. Wide outs and running backs can be found in the later rounds, and if your quarterback is “That Guy,” he’ll make them better.

Just look at the numbers Watson put up last year after Houston traded away his number one weapon. He had his best year as a pro with a journeyman on his fourth team in five years as his number one receiver.

And yes, Watson’s good play in 2020 didn’t help the Texans, but that team is a train wreck. Just look at how easily Chicago dismantled them last December. That team is worse than the Bears at damn near every position and no one was going to pull that franchise to respectability.

The Bears have more issues than just QB, but if you get that guy, you figure out the rest.