Could a little Minshew Mania be in store for the Chicago Bears? While there has been seemingly endless talk about the Bears moving up in the draft to select a quarterback next week, some think they might acquire a young signal-caller without drafting one.
According to a recent article by Alex Kay of Bleacher Report, the Bears could very easily nab Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew, who is both young and an experienced NFL starter. Kay thinks Minshew would be a “boon” for the Bears, and unlike other quarterbacks in the draft, they wouldn’t have to trade the farm to get him.
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Proposed Trade Would Get Bears Cheap QB in Minshew
At this point, Chicago’s options at the quarterback position are limited. Rumors the team is plotting to move up are fun and exciting, but might not be realistic considering the lack of draft capital it has. The 20th overall pick isn’t that attractive of a trade chip, and many fans and analysts are rightly concerned about the Bears mortgaging the future for a young quarterback with question marks.
Enter Minshew, who is young, healthy, and entirely affordable. He also comes with a few question marks, but he has performed well at times against some stiff competition.
Jaguars’ QB Gardner Minshew is the first player to ever throw at least three TD passes and complete at least 95.0 percent of his passes on Kickoff Weekend. In his last two games against the Colts, Minshew has completed 46 of 59 passes for 468 yards, six TDs and one INT.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 13, 2020
#Jaguars QB Gardner Minshew with an absolute DIME!
We’re at a 30-30 tie, folks. pic.twitter.com/EPfBAgdWsR
— Big URBAN RENEWAL Country (@BigCatCountry) September 20, 2020
Gardner Minshew: professional dime thrower pic.twitter.com/eWoQrRNHPY
— Ian Hartitz (@Ihartitz) September 24, 2019
Here’s what Kay proposed the Bears do to nab Minshew — and it’s certainly reasonable:
- Jacksonville Jaguars get: Two 2021 sixth-round picks (Nos. 205 and 229)
- Chicago Bears get: QB Gardner Minshew II
Two sixth-round picks aren’t much to give up for Minshew, who could compete with Andy Dalton for the starting job. Where is Nick Foles in this scenario? Likely traded or on the bench, as Minshew already beat him out once for a starting job in 2019.
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Minshew’s Numbers, Contract Are Promising
Minshew has a cap hit of $897,904 in 2021 and $1,012,904 in 2022 per Over the Cap, so the Bears could easily squeeze him onto their current roster with some minor shuffling.
A young quarterback who has shown promise, Minshew also needs work, particularly when it comes to holding on to the ball. He started 12 games as a rookie in 2019, going 6-6 and completing 60.6 percent of his passes for 3,271 yards, 21 touchdowns and six interceptions.
He started eight games last season, limited by a thumb injury, finishing with a 66.1 completion percentage, 2,259 yards, 16 touchdowns and five interceptions. He was also sacked 60 times in the last two seasons, and he has fumbled 18 times in two years, recovering two of them.
While Minshew initially failed to disclose the severity of his thumb injury last season, many hypothesized that the Jags benched the second-year quarterback in favor of the clearly inept Mike Glennon in order to ensure they’d lose out, freeing them up to nab Trevor Lawrence with the No. 1 overall pick this year.
Minshew Would Be a ‘Boon’
Kay elaborated as to why he thinks the Bears may take a shot on Minshew instead of some other young quarterbacks in the draft:
Minshew would be a boon for the Chicago Bears, who have failed to swing a trade for a franchise quarterback. … Chicago shouldn’t need to dangle anything more than a pair of late-round picks to convince the Jaguars to move Minshew to the Windy City. The Bears own four selections in the sixth this year, so giving up their first and last picks in the round will likely be enough to get a deal hammered out. With Minshew gone, Lawrence can become the man in Jacksonville right away. The Bears would likely let Minshew and Dalton duke it out for the starting job during training camp, but Minshew offers upside that Dalton doesn’t at this point in his career. Minshew’s ceiling would be a decent long-term starter, and that alone is worth trading for after striking out on the alternative options this offseason.
Another thing to consider? Current Bears quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo was the offensive coordinator for the Jaguars during Minshew’s rookie season, so Minshew alreadyhas ties to the Windy City. Whether he lands in Chicago will be determined soon enough, but considering the current climate surrounding the Bears and quarterbacks, he may be one of the better options remaining.