Bears Expect to Sign $82.5 Million Pro Bowl WR Alongside DJ Moore

The Chicago Bears made a statement by trading for wide receiver DJ Moore before last year’s NFL draft, and another elite-level standout is likely to join the squad in the coming months.

ESPN analyst Aaron Schatz recently made the bold prediction that Chicago would seek and eventually sign free agency-wide receiver Mike Evans this summer to build around the young quarterback he predicts will lead the Bears’ attack in 2024 and beyond.



“The Bears will use the No. 1 pick on a new quarterback and invest in that quarterback by signing Mike Evans, one of the top free-agent wide receivers,” Schatz wrote on January 7 of this year. “Evans has 10 straight 1,000-yard seasons and would pair nicely with DJ Moore in this offense.”

Mike Evans, one of the NFL’s best WRs, is expected to top $24 million annually.

Bears Expected to Sign WR Mike Evans to Pair with DJ Moore

Evans’ stretch of 1,000-yard seasons is second only to Hall of Fame wideout Jerry Rice, who had 11 straight years from 1996 to 2006 as a member of the San Francisco 49ers. Randy Moss, a Minnesota Vikings star, has also had ten seasons of 1,000 yards, but not all consecutive.




Evans’ career achievements rank him among the top wide receivers of all time, and the 30-year-old is far from finished. He was named to the Pro Bowl for the fifth time in his career in 2023 and will play in the playoffs after helping the Tampa Bay Buccaneers win their third consecutive NFC South Division title. Evans also won a Super Bowl ring with the Bucs after the 2020 season.




Tampa Bay will visit the Philadelphia Eagles on Super Wild Card Weekend, and this might be Evans’ final game in a Tampa Bay uniform. The wideout completed the last season of his five-year, $82.5 million deal with the Bucs in 2023 and will become a free agency in March. Spotrac estimates his market value at approximately $24 million per year over a new four-year contract.

Moore is the Bears’ lone legitimate playmaking threat on the edge, as the team passed up a trade for Chase Claypool in 2022 and has seen Darnell Mooney deteriorate in each of the previous two seasons. Chicago has a projected $62 million in salary cap space and is expected to invest aggressively in offensive in 2024 after prioritizing defense in 2023.



Mike Evans makes sense as an addition to the Bears’ offense, regardless of who plays quarterback in 2024.

Buccaneers expect to lose a $82.5 million star to the Bears. - eatlacatedral

Schatz’s forecast involves a franchise-altering decision to trade Justin Fields and choose a quarterback first overall in April, most likely Caleb Williams of USC or Drake Maye of North Carolina. The Bears may or may not do so, since Fields’ play improved at the end of the season after returning from a four-week absence due to a dislocated thumb.



In either case, Evans would be a good addition to the offense with Moore. Fields is 24 years old and has only three professional seasons under his belt. Fields has never had a genuine No. 1 receiver until Moore arrived ahead of this season, and he has yet to play with a Hall of Famer like Evans.

If Chicago picks Williams, 22, or Maye, 21, both will benefit greatly from having a Pro Bowl-caliber player on either side of the offense during their rookie seasons. Furthermore, if Evans signs a four-year contract, as Spotrac predicts, his timeframe would match precisely with the rookie contract of either Williams or Maye in Chicago.




In either case, Evans would be a good addition to the offense with Moore. Fields is 24 years old and has only three professional seasons under his belt. Fields has never had a genuine No. 1 receiver until Moore arrived ahead of this season, and he has yet to play with a Hall of Famer like Evans.

If Chicago picks Williams, 22, or Maye, 21, both will benefit greatly from having a Pro Bowl-caliber player on either side of the offense during their rookie seasons. Furthermore, if Evans signs a four-year contract, as Spotrac predicts, his timeframe would match precisely with the rookie contract of either Williams or Maye in Chicago.



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