In a development that would spell the end of Mitch Trubisky’s time as a starter, the Bears are talking to former Saints quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, per Pro Football Talk.
Bridgewater has started six games since the end of the 2015 season. He went undefeated in five games starting for Drew Brees last year, however. He went 23-for-38 for 281 yards, two touchdowns and a 100.9 passer rating in a 36-25 win at Soldier Field on Oct. 20. He finished the season with nine touchdowns and two interceptions.
A former first-round pick by the Vikings in 2014, Bridgewater missed the 2016 season after suffering a grisly knee injury in preseason practice. He never started again for the Vikings, but landed in New Orleans, where he backed up Drew Brees the past two seasons
Free agency is a fluid situation, of course. Bridgewater’s destination might depend on the moves other quarterback-needy teams — namely the Buccaneers — make. Discussions don’t guarantee an agreement.
Later Monday, NFL Network reported that the Bears were looking elsewhere: toward trade targets Nick Foles and Andy Dalton. One year removed from signing a monster deal with the Jaguars, Foles has worked with coach Matt Nagy, offensive coordinator Bill Lazor and quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo. Dalton has worked with Lazor. Neither would represent the sure-fire starter that Bridgewater — who would figure to make at least $20 million — would.
Regardless of where Bridgewater lands, Monday’s sign is the biggest yet that, despite their rhetoric, the Bears are willing to move on from the player Ryan Pace traded up to draft No. 2 overall in 2017. The team has options.
Pace and Nagy have claimed loyalty to Trubisky since the end of the regular season, but their frustration has been obvious. In his last two press conferences, Nagy has referenced Trubisky’s struggles reading a defense and stressed the importance of him studying film during the offseason.
The NFL’s legal tampering period began at 11 a.m. Free agents can’t be officially signed until Wednesday afternoon.