Could the Chicago Bears trade Robert Quinn to the AFC West?

The purge has been well underway for the Chicago Bears’ roster since new GM Ryan Poles took over – but could it result in dealing the other major pass rusher Robert Quinn? With the NFL Draft just two weeks away, Bleacher Report’s Ian Wharton floated the idea that the Bears should consider making a trade with another AFC West team to land them more draft capitol:

Deal: Chiefs get Edge Robert Quinn; Bears get pick No. 94

The impact of Melvin Ingram’s midseason addition in 2021 should be further proof of the Chiefs’ need to add a premier body to the unit. Frank Clark can no longer be the creative rusher, and it’s unlikely a rookie will push the defense over the hill in the playoffs.

As Wharton points out, a year ago it appeared the Bears would be stuck with Quinn until it fiscally made sense for them to part ways with the soon-to-be 32-year-old pass rusher. Then in 2021, Quinn put together one of the best seasons Bears fans have ever seen, setting the franchise record for most sacks in a season with 18.5. As Poles did in the Khalil Mack trade, there’s an understanding with this new regime of when the timing is right, you pull the trigger on what makes sense for the franchise’s future – a philosophy that wasn’t adopted all too well with the previous front office.

When it comes to Quinn’s contract, the benefits of finding a trade partner wouldn’t be felt until the 2023 season as only $4.4 million would come off the books with a dead cap number of $12.7 million for this coming year. Adding a little more to the Bears’ $45 million dead cap number seems like a not shocking move at this point. Only the Falcons and Texans, who just dealt massive quarterback contracts, have higher dead cap numbers in 2022.

Now, if the Bears end up waiting and trading Quinn until after June 1st, things become a lot more feasible. The savings balloon up to $12.9 million with just a $4.2 million dead cap hit. Could a move like that be in the cards for Poles to make? Absolutely. They may even be able to get a little higher of a pick in 2023 than the Chiefs’ 94th overall selection this season if they can find the right match.

Regardless of what direction Quinn’s future in Chicago goes, the odds of him playing out the final three years of his contract with the Bears is rather slim. Carrying cap hits of $17, $18 and $17 million the final three years of his deal is a lot for Chicago to carry given their current rebuilding situation. We know Poles and company aren’t pulling any punches when it comes to navigating the Bears back to a Super Bowl. With so few options left, any type of trade including Quinn may just be another step in their process.

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