The Bears entered the offseason facing the possibility of losing four starters to free agency. They cut that number down by one Saturday, signing right tackle Bobby Massie to a four-year contract extension that runs through 2022. Total guarantees weren’t immediately available, but a source confirmed Massie will make a bit more than $8 million per year. Only four right tackles in the NFL average more per year, according to Spotrac.
Forced to sit out the first two rounds of this year’s draft and play the free-agent market with only a projected $20 million in their pockets, the Bears found value in taking Massie off the market before he could speak with other teams in March.
Better known for his run-blocking than his pass protection, Massie, 29, still allowed only one sack, two quarterback hits and 23 hurries in 2018, according to Pro Football Focus. The Bears’ line allowed only 33 sacks, tied for the third-fewest in the NFC, and helped quarterback Mitch Trubisky reach his first Pro Bowl.
The Bears have all five of their starting offensive linemen — Massie, left tackle Charles Leno Jr., guards Kyle Long and James Daniels and center Cody Whitehair — signed for next season. Whitehair is expected to receive an extension. When he does, he’ll become the fourth starting offensive lineman to have his contract extended by general manager Ryan Pace.
“Bobby has been an important part of our offensive line the last three years and has shown steady improvement during that time,” Pace said in a statement. “Bobby has a tremendous work ethic and has displayed the kind of toughness and consistency we want in our players. More important, he is a great teammate, and we’re excited to keep him in the fold.”
Massie wrote on Twitter that he was “proud and excited to stay a part of the [Bears’] legacy. Now let’s get this ring.”
He spent the last three seasons as the Bears’ right tackle, starting all but two games. Massie spent his first four seasons with the Cardinals, where he started 46 games at right tackle. The Cardinals drafted him in the fourth round out of Ole Miss in 2012.
With Massie locked up, the Bears are left with three starters who are slated to become free agents in March: safety Adrian Amos, cornerback Bryce Callahan and punter Pat O’Donnell.
The Bears will prioritize the defensive backs now that they’ve reached an agreement with Massie. Were they to bring both back, they’d likely return every starter from a defense that was the league’s best last season.