Insider Reveals Bears’ Veteran Defender Likely Gone After Season

Eddie Goldman Bears future

Getty Eddie Goldman has seen a steep decline in his performance this year.

Eddie Goldman’s days in the Windy City are likely numbered.

The starting nose tackle for the Chicago Bears has had a tumultuous start to the season, and one prominent team insider thinks this will be Goldman’s last year in a Bears uniform.

Goldman, who made a reputation for himself as one of the team’s best run stoppers since his arrival in 2015, opted out last season due to concerns about COVID-19, and there was some discussion heading into the season about whether he would be in solid playing shape after missing an entire year.

Top Bears insider Brad Biggs of The Chicago Tribune says that Goldman’s conditioning is no longer the primary concern, however.

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Bears Run Defense Has Been Huge Disappointment So Far

The Bears had the best run defense in the NFL in 2018, allowing just 80.0 yards per game on the ground. Goldman was a huge reason for that. Chicago’s ‘D’ has gotten progressively worse at stopping the run in recent years, though. The Bears allowed 102.0 yards per game on the ground in 2019 and 113.4 ypg last season with Goldman out the entire year. This season, however, the run defense has been AWOL, particularly in recent weeks.

Chicago’s defense gave up its third straight 100+ yard rushing game when it allowed 145 yards rushing against the San Francisco 49ers Week 8. Goldman, who has played in five games this season after missing the first few weeks, currently has a career-low 35.1 overall grade from PFF. His stat line is scant in an eyebrow-raising kind of way. He has two solo tackles, four pressures and four hurries in 149 total snaps.

Goldman is due a base salary of $8.76 million next year, and the Bears would take a $5.15 million dead cap hit if they cut him outright, per Spotrac. Another possibility? Biggs had reported over the summer that Goldman, who turns 28 in January, was mulling retirement. That didn’t happen, but it’s something to consider when pondering Goldman’s situation at season’s end.

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Biggs: ‘If You Think About Retirement, You Are Retired’

In his November 3 column, Biggs strongly suggested Goldman will be gone next year, and he also brought up retirement again:

I don’t think Goldman’s football shape can be the issue anymore. He has five games under his belt now and was on the field for 30 largely unnoticeable snaps in the loss to the 49ers. He’s not that force at nose tackle he was previously in his career, and to be quite frank, I’m not completely surprised. As I reported over the summer, my sources told me Goldman was considering retirement. There’s an old saying players and coaches use: If you’re thinking about retirement, you are retired. It’s not fair to pin all of this on Goldman, and when you look at what the 49ers did, Kyle Shanahan planned to attack the Bears on the edges with Khalil Mack out. They ran right at the edges and dominated the Bears even when they knew the run was coming. But all of the action wasn’t to the outside, and Goldman simply isn’t performing like an elite nose tackle.

Biggs seems to think either the Bears or Goldman will elect to part ways at season’s end. “Eddie Goldman has been missing in action,” Biggs said in an appearance on 670 The Score’s “Mully & Haugh” on November 2. “Eddie doesn’t have it anymore.”

Time will tell, but Biggs is usually dead on in his reports. If Goldman can pick it up in the second half of the season, things could change, but as it stands, the nose tackle’s future is looking murkier than ever.

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