Vikings Rival Pulls off Strange and Splashy Trade

Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports.

The Chicago Bears are 2-6 and have a 4.4% chance of reaching the postseason, according to ESPN’s Football Power Index.

Vikings Rival Pulls off Strange and Splashy Trade

That means it’s time to send high-round draft capital to other NFC teams for big-name players, right?

Evidently.

The Bears acquired EDGE rusher Montez Sweat from the Washington Commanders, as ESPN Adam Schefter tweeted Tuesday, “Trade: Commanders and Bears have agreed to a trade that is expected to send DE Montez Sweat to the Chicago for a 2024 second-round pick, per sources. Sweat is in the last year of his contract, and the Commanders are opting for a draft pick now. Chicago beefs up its line.”

Strange and Splashy
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The NFL’s trade deadline is Tuesday at 4:00 pm EST, and the Bears struck with the first splashy move of the day. Other moves from clubs are expected by the deadline, as poor teams position for the Caleb Williams and Drake Maye Sweepstakes in April.

On the surface, many will think, “Sure, why wouldn’t the Bears upgrade the defense for 2023 and beyond?”

And that logic is sound, but Sweat was scheduled for free agency in 2024, meaning, in theory, the Bears could’ve signed the man outright in four months, free of any draft capital charge.

Vikings Rival Could Get
Adam Cairns-The Columbus Dispatch.

The Bears said no thanks to that idea and landed Sweat for a 2nd-Rounder, which would be the 35th overall pick if the draft occurred tonight. Chicago has a recent history of curious — flatly bad — trades, grabbing Chase Claypool from the Pittsburgh Steelers last year for a 2nd-Round selection that would later turn into the 32nd overall pick.

The Steelers used the pick to seize cornerback Joey Porter Jr., who is absolutely thriving as a rookie.

Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports.

For Sweat, he goes from a struggling team with the Commanders at 3-5 to a 2-6 Bears club whose season is nearing utter irrelevance. The grass was not greener on the other side, at least not for the 2023 season.

Washington drafted Sweat from the 1st Round in 2019, and he’s started 67 games since, tabulating 197 total tackles, 85 QB hits, 47 tackles for loss, 35.5 sacks, and 9 forced fumbles. The man is a baller, and the Bears will welcome a profound disruptor on the field.

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports.

Other Commanders defensive linemen like Chase Young and Jonathan Allen have lived in the NFL trade rumor mill for the last month, but it is unclear if Washington will offload more defensive talent after the Sweat trade. Even with a marvelous defensive line, including Chase Young, Jonathan Allen, Daron Payne, and Montez Sweat, the Commanders defense ranks 28th per EPA/Play after Week 8.

Sweat turned 27 last month.


Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.

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