The fans have spoken, clearly and frequently. When the Chicago Bears signed wide receiver Allen Robinson to a three-year, $42 million contract in 2018, it was following his lost 2017 season with the Jacksonville Jaguars, in which he suffered a torn ACL in the first game and missed the entire year. He was a question mark at the time, but after his first two seasons in Chicago, all questions have been answered. Robinson has 153 catches for 1,901 yards and 11 touchdowns in his two years as a Bear, and he has become a fan favorite — so much so that Bears fans have been clamoring for their team to re-sign him at every opportunity.
Robinson was selected by his teammates to receive the Ed Block Courage Award this year, which is given to players who exemplify sportsmanship, service, and courage both on the field and off. When the Bears’ team Twitter account announced Robinson as the winner of the award, Bears fans decided to use the opportunity to let the team know how they felt about its star wide receiver.
Bears Fans to Team on Twitter: ‘Pay That Man’
The support Robinson has received from Bears fans has not gone unnoticed. NFL insider Ian Rapoport noted that the comment section in the team’s post about the Ed Block Courage Award was full of fans who wanted “to get this man paid.”
Rapoport wasn’t wrong. Here’s a small sample of what Bears fans had to say about the team extending Robinson on that post alone:
Extending Robinson wouldn’t just make the fan base happy. It would also benefit the team’s salary cap situation.
Robinson is slated to make $13 million this season, per Spotrac. Extending his contract while subsequently reworking it could save the Bears anywhere from $5-10 million in 2020. His current cap hit for 2020 is around $15 million. Extending him would allow the team to move a solid chunk of the $15 million to later seasons, freeing up more cap space now.
The Bears currently have around $24 million in cap space according to Spotrac, and with the additions they need to make this offseason (offensive line, tight end, quarterback, safety and corner are the primary needs) they will need every dollar they can get.
Re-signing their top wideout seems like it should be a priority, and if what Bears general manager Ryan Pace said in late February is any indication, it will be.
“We keep those things inside, but it’s obviously something we’ve talked about,” Pace said. “He’s a good player and does a lot for our team on and off the field and he’s a guy we’d like to have a Bear for a long time.”
That’s great news — but it cannot happen soon enough for Bears fans.