The Chicago Bears slipped to 3-5 on Sunday with a blowout loss to the Cowboys in Dallas, falling 3.5 games behind the Vikings in the NFC North.
It has been a reminder that the Bears are still building, and as building teams do, they are starting to shift focus to the future with their moves ahead of the NFL trade deadline. Last week they sent veteran defensive end Robert Quinn to the Eagles for a fourth-round pick, and on Monday they made an even bigger trade sending out another defensive star in linebacker Roquan Smith, dealing the All-Pro to the Ravens for a second and fifth-round pick.
— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) October 31, 2022
Compensation update: Bears are trading LB Roquan Smith to the Ravens in exchange for second- and fifth-round picks, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 31, 2022
Smith has become one of the NFL’s best middle linebackers in his young career, but he and the Bears could not reach a contract extension prior to the season, leading to the star to issue a trade request in August. Smith has played through that request, piling up 83 tackles (the most in the NFL), including 2.5 sacks, along with two interceptions, continuing to be a force in the middle of the Bears defense. He joins a Ravens team that has not been strong against the run this season and should immediately bring a sideline-to-sideline presence as Baltimore looks to secure their spot as an AFC playoff team at 5-3, currently sitting in first in the AFC North. One would also expect the Ravens to try and work out a deal to keep him long-term, considering the draft capital they’re giving up to get him.
The Bears get some solid draft capital in return, but one has to wonder if it’s worth giving up an All-Pro linebacker still entering his prime. Although that decision was made this offseason, and now they’re just reaping as much in return as they can get.