Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace was the talk of the town during the 2018 season after acquiring superstar defender Khalil Mack from the Las Vegas Raiders. With Mack leading the way on defense and quarterback Mitchell Trubisky playing above-average on offense, the Bears won the NFC North for the first time since 2010.
However, after the Bears regressed in 2019 and missed the playoffs–mostly because Trubisky was awful under center–Pace became the villain in Chicago since he passed on Deshaun Watson in the 2017 draft and selected Trubisky.
Deshaun Watson has established himself as one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL with the Houston Texans, while Mitchell Trubisky has proven to be a below-average QB in Chicago. Luckily for Ryan Pace and the Bears, though, they may have a chance to make up for their colossal mistake.
Deshaun Watson got $156 million from the Texans
Before the 2020 season, the Texans signed Deshaun Watson to a four-year, $156 million contract extension. Meanwhile, the Bears declined the 2021 option on Mitchell Trubisky’s contract.
By Watson getting generational money from the Texans and Trubisky not receiving an extension, it proved that Ryan Pace and the Bears made an enormous error in drafting Trubisky with the second overall pick in the 2017 draft. Not only did Pace trade up to draft Trubisky, but he passed on Watson despite the Georgia native being a superstar in college at Clemson and winning the National Championship in 2016.
The Bears could have made a Super Bowl run in 2018 with Watson under center instead of Trubisky. Chicago had an elite defense, but Trubisky was holding the team back on offense, and it’s one of the reasons the Bears lost to the Philadelphia Eagles in the Wild Card on January 6, 2019.
Watson has thrown for 14,539 yards in 54 NFL games and 104 touchdowns. He has a quarterback rating of 104.5 and is an elite dual-threat gunslinger. Meanwhile, Trubisky has racked up 10,609 passing yards with the Bears and tossed only 64 touchdowns.
The Bears may never recover from drafting Mitchell Trubisky over Deshaun Watson. However, the football Gods could give Ryan Pace and Chicago another chance at grabbing Watson.
The Bears could trade for Deshaun Watson, who is unhappy in Houston
According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Deshaun Watson isn’t happy with the Texans since the franchise didn’t consult him during their general manager search. The three-time Pro Bowler “wanted to at least have the opportunity to meet with ownership’s finalists so he could offer thoughts from a player standpoint.”
Several people around the NFL believe Watson could demand a trade from the Texans, who went 4-12 in 2020. If that happens, Ryan Pace and the Bears must do whatever it takes to get Watson in Chicago and make up for their blunder in 2017 when the franchise drafted Mitchell Trubisky instead of the athletic signal-caller.
Bears fans are ready to part ways with anyone on the roster to land Watson. Even if Pace has to trade Khalil Mack, Roquan Smith, or even Eddie Jackson for Watson, Chicago supporters are all in on getting the star QB to the Windy City since the Bears have never had a franchise quarterback in team history.
If Ryan Pace can acquire Deshaun Watson and re-sign wideout Allen Robinson in free agency, Chicago fans may build a Pace statue outside of Soldier Field as their way of apologizing for slandering him and thanking the general manager for getting a superstar quarterback.
The Bears will likely have a new QB in 2021
The Bears face the New Orleans Saints in the Wild Card. No one expects Chicago to defeat New Orleans since Drew Brees is leaps and bounds better than Mitchell Trubisky.
All signs point toward the Bears starting a new QB in 2021. Trubisky becomes a free agent this offseason, and he’s widely expected to test the open market. Ryan Pace has to be aggressive in trying to acquire Deshaun Watson from the Texans. It’s not every day a franchise quarterback becomes available on the trade market, especially one who was supposed to be drafted by the Bears in the first place.
Stats courtesy of Football Reference.