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Finding the right price for Alshon Jeffery

Chicago Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery (17) runs after making a catch against Washington Redskins cornerback Quinton Dunbar (47) during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 13, 2015, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

The Bears have a lot of needs this offseason. There are plenty of positions on both sides of the ball that the team needs to address. The most important move may not be a new addition to the team, but retaining one of the stars.

Alshon Jeffery is hitting free agency this offseason as his rookie contract comes to an end. With a lack of offensive fire power, bringing back Jeffery could be crucial to any success the Bears success.

While the Bears can always bring Jeffery back with the franchise tag, they will attempt to sign the receiver to a long-term deal. Finding the right price, however, may not be easy. According to Pro Football Focus, Jeffery is the best free agent at any position hitting the open market this year.

Related: Matt Forte’s market value may be way out of Bears’ price range

According to Spotrac, Jeffery’s talent doesn’t tell the whole story. When analyzing his rank in the NFL, the Spotrac has him worthy of a $64 million deal over five years. That would make him the seventh highest-paid wide receiver per-year in the NFL.

Jeffery showed flashes of elite WR1 over his past four years in Chicago. Unfortunately he also showed inconsistency and a bit of injury proneness. Factor that in to a Bears offense that fell off in the past two seasons, and he’s entering his first free agent market on a bit of a downturn. He’s still arguably the best available free agent WR, and it’s likely the Bears make a big push to keep him. A $12.8M AAV would rank 7th among WRs, right behind T.Y. Hilton’s recent contract.

The biggest knock on Jeffery so far in his career has been his ability to stay on the field. Jeffery missed seven games this season and was far from healthy in many of the nine games he was able to play.