Bears offseason overview — insider

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The Bears made several major moves this offseason, and ESPN NFL writer Mike Sando gave the Bears a “B” grade for all their acquisitions and subtractions.

Sando asked ESPN analysts Bill Polian, Louis Riddick, Matt Williamson and Field Yates for their opinion on each offseason move.

Some of the major additions include safety Antrel Rolle, receiver Eddie Royal, running back Jacquizz Rodgers and defensive end Ray McDonald.

The key losses for the Bears include receiver Brandon Marshall, cornerback Charles Tillman and linebacker Lance Briggs.

Here’s what the analysts said about the Bears’ offseason moves:

Polian said he would have handled the Jay Cutler situation the same way the Bears handled it — keeping him as the starter, given the money guaranteed to him this season and the fact that there wasn’t a viable replacement option — but is anyone excited about the status quo at quarterback? Trading Brandon Marshall made sense under the circumstances, but did it make the Bears better? Vic Fangio was a good hire at defensive coordinator, but does Chicago have the personnel to run his base 3-4 scheme? It was an offseason filled with trade-offs, one reason the endorsements carried qualifiers. I guess they did well, Williamson said. Losing Marshall and getting White, adding a center, hiring a good offensive coordinator in Adam Gase — the offense should be pretty good. Going to a 3-4 on defense, I thought they might need 10 new starters, but now I look at their defense and do not think it is awful. They are not contenders, but I give them a B grade. Riddick was the only analyst to give the Bears an A grade. He loved McPhee’s addition and predicted the ex-Raven would rip it up in Fangio’s scheme. The coaching staff is star-studded with a lot of brain power in ‘Fanny’ and Gase, Riddick said. Whether Antrel Rolle can be the jack of all trades at strong safety in that 3-4, that is key. Eddie Goldman, if he can stabilize the nose, that is key. They are building it strong down the middle. I like how they have done it from the top down, GM to coach to coordinators and then strengthening the roster down the middle. Now, we’ll see if it works.

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