Having passed his physical, Brandon Marshall was officially traded to the Jets, along with a 2015 seventh-round draft pick, for a fifth-rounder Tuesday.
The Bears agreed to deal perhaps their greatest receiver of all time on Friday, but the swap couldn’t be completed until the NFL’s league year began Tuesday at 3 p.m. Amazingly, Marshall will join the fourth team in his career, having been drafted by the Broncos and traded to the Dolphins.
Last season, Marshall recorded 721 receiving yards — his fewest since his rookie year in 2006 — before suffering a ribs and lungs injury in Week 13 against the Cowboys. He missed the rest of the season.
The Bears’ new bosses — coach John Fox and GM Ryan Pace — refused to publicly back Marshall upon their arrival, and apparently decided that the five-time Pro Bowler wasn’t a good fit, particularly in the locker room. While Marshall’s production hasn’t been questioned, even as he is about to turn 31, his outspoken nature could have made him more trouble than he was worth.
Marshall told the Jets’ web site “kind of knew” about the trade “before it happened,” indicating the Bears were clear about his future.
“It was pretty cool to be able to sit back and figure out who really wanted me and the right place for me,” he said. “Being able to be in New York with (head) coach (Todd) Bowles, I thought, was an amazing opportunity and one that I thought I couldn’t pass up.”
Last season, Marshall signed a three-year contract extension on “The View,” held a rambling press conference to refute old domestic violence claims, and screamed at teammates following a loss within earshot of reporters.
He flew to New York to film Showtime’s “Inside the NFL” on the Bears’ Tuesday off-days, and said last month that he planned to talk to the Bears’ new bosses about doing so again. He was active in the community, touting his Project 375 foundation.
He laughingly the Jets’ site he had “10 more years left,” but reiterated that he’s just trying to improve.
“I can still do everything, and I’m excited to do that,” he said.
In a veiled shot at the Bears, he told the web site he hadn’t played “with a great defense (like the Jets’) in a very long time.”
The Jets’ fifth-round pick will replace the fifth-rounder the Bears traded to the Broncos last season as part of a package to move up and select safety Brock Vereen.