Friday, January 13, 2023

Proposed Trade Lands Bears 3-Way All-Pro Wide Receiver

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One of the top priorities for the Chicago Bears this offseason is landing a high-end pass catcher. As luck would have it, one of these players is about to conquer the trade market.

DeAndre Hopkins, currently with the Arizona Cardinals, is hoping to land elsewhere after a tumultuous season in the desert. There are a handful of viable options, with Chicago being considered one of the best among them. The Bears have a rising star at quarterback in Justin Fields and more than $110 million in cap space to absorb the last two years left of Hopkins’ contract or, more likely, sign him to a new contract.

Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox made the case for the Bears to play at Hopkins on Thursday, Jan. 12.

The Score’s Jordan Schultz reported Tuesday that the Cardinals plan to deal Hopkins in the offseason.

Arizona had a disastrous 4-13 season in 2022 that ended with the firing of head coach Kliff Kingsbury and the resignation of general manager Steve Keim.

Quarterback Kyler Murray has been at the center of several organizational issues over the past year, including public clashes with Kingsbury over offensive plans and game calls, as well as a contract clause in his renewal that required him to commit to a specific weekly film study program.

The Cardinals finished last in the hard-fought NFC West division and don’t appear to be any real contenders anytime soon, making paying a player like Hopkins a less wise investment.

If Hopkins came to Chicago, he would immediately become Fields’ No. 1 option in the passing game.

While the Bears quarterback had a near-historic season in which he rushed football and finished the year with 1,143 yards and eight touchdowns on 160 carries, there’s significant room for improvement for Fields, the passer. In 15 games, the QB threw for 2,247 yards, 17 touchdowns and 11 interceptions, according to the Pro Football Reference.

The receiver room is thin, with the injured Darnell Mooney leading all wideouts with 493 yards and two touchdowns on 40 catches in 12 games in 2022. Tight end Cole Kmet ended the year as Chicago’s lead passcatcher with 544 yards and seven touchdowns on 50 catches.

Hopkins, on the other hand, rushed for 717 yards and three touchdowns on 64 catches in just nine games after serving a six-game suspension earlier in the year for violating the NFL’s performance-enhancing drug policy.

Hopkins, 30, has earned trips to five Pro Bowls as well as three first-team All-Pro selections over his 10-year NFL career.

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