Recommended Steelers-Bears Trade for Linebacker Roquan Smith

Roquan Smith

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Roquan Smith of the Chicago Bears on October 3, 2021.

On Thursday, August 9, Roquan Smith, patron of the Chicago Bears publicly requested the trade, claiming that “the new front of the organization doesn’t take me here seriously” and that “they’ve given up. refuse to negotiate in good faith” on contract renewal. Premium requests come via a letter shared by Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, in which Smith explains why he wants to leave Chicago.

On August 10, Jason Lieser of the Chicago Sun-Times urged Bears general manager Ryan Poles to trade Smith or sign a contract extension with him next weekend, calling the player-team situation a “inextricable”.

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What will Roquan Smith find in the trade?

A source told Lieser if Ryan Poles decides to go the commercial route, “The market will likely make a best-case offer of a first- and third-round pick in 2023.

That said, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Joe Starkey proposed a third-year broad receiver trade Chase Claypool and a second-round pick to the Bears in exchange for Smith.

“What about a package involving Diontae Johnson,” he added, suggesting an alternative involving the fourth-year Steelers recipient, who signed a two-year contract extension just last week.

Not so long ago, such a trade seemed almost unthinkable, but the Steelers gave up a future first-round pick to get the All-Pro safe Minkah Fitzpatrick from the Miami Dolphins in 2015. 2019. And they made one less trade to try to settle the position last summer, when they made a sixth-round pick for defender Joe Schobert from his sacking, who has had recent tryouts with several NFL teams – including the Denver Broncos and the New Orleans Saints – but have yet to be signed.

One complicating factor is that Smith – who is representing himself in the negotiations, La Baltimore Ravens defender Lamar Jackson – is looking for a lucrative contract extension. He is entering the final year of the rookie contract he signed in 2018, which requires him to be paid a salary of $9.735 million, according to

What does Roquan Smith want to be paid for?

During an appearance on 670 The Score in Chicago, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport pointed out that “Roquan Smith is asking for more money than Darius Leonard,” who signed a five-year, $98.5 million deal with the Colts last August.

It’s a big undertaking, but one that might be worth considering if Smith, 25, could be the permanent solution in the position – the solution the Steelers have been looking for since the end of Ryan Shazier’s career. ended abruptly on that fateful night in Cincinnati in December 2017.

Out on the field for a second consecutive All-Pro team season, Smith’s recent history suggests he’ll be up to the task. His stats give a similar feel. Since the Bears drafted Smith No. 8 overall out of Georgia in 2018, de has appeared in 61 career games, with 59 starts. In those games, he scored a total of 524 tackles (348 solos), including 43 tackles lost, 5 interceptions, 14 clearances and 17 midfield hits, according to Pro Football. References.

Of course, swapping for Smith could mean the end of Devin Bush’s Steelers career. The former first-round player is poised to become a free agent after the 2022 season, as the team rejected his fifth-year selection in May.

It’s also possible that Smith and the Bears will reconcile.

“Right now, my intention is to sign Roquan for this team,” Ryan Poles said after Smith’s statement. “We’re going to do it day by day, and at the end of the day, we have to do what’s best for this organization. But my intention is to make sure Roquan is signed with this team,” he concluded.

That said, Smith has left the door open for the Bears to step in to “save” the situation, “but right now I don’t see a path back to the organization I really love,” he concluded. .

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