The Chicago Bears are in the middle of the free agency period right now. Their recent additions have brought the hope that this team will be a contender in the NFC this upcoming season. Mixed with the current talent already on roster, that optimism is well justified.
The team’s current cap situation, however, gives rise to the issue of how next year’s free agency will be handled. A marquee offensive player in wide receiver Brandon Marshall will be playing this season on the final year of his contract.
There’s no doubt that the organization and Bear fans want Marshall back catching balls from Jay Cutler as long as possible. The lack of ample salary cap space will make it tricky for the Bears to finalize a deal before the end of next season with the need to still draft and sign incoming rookie players to their contracts.
The good thing about the situation is that he has vocally asserted that he is not looking to be an overpaid player at the wide receiver position. “I do want to be in a good position, but at the same time I definitely am not trying to be in the $15 million range,” Marshall told ESPN Chicago 1000. He went on to name fellow wide receivers such as Calvin Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald as the players who are being paid that kind of money.
Marshall is certainly worth that much for his output up until now and what he will be worth in the Bears’ offense going forward, but he believes that quarterbacks are the type of players who command that tier of salary.
Right now Marshall seems content to play out the final year of his contract and continue contract talks at a later date. He is confident that a deal will get done even if he has to force the front office to re-sign him. His focus this spring has been solely centered on improving his skills down in Florida, helping the team become a more cohesive unit and getting the Bears to their ultimate goal of winning the NFC and the Lombardi Trophy.
I don’t think Marshall has been more thrilled to a part of a team than he is right now in Chicago.