Remember Henry Melton? He's a free agent now, and the Bears would do… (Brian Cassella / Chicago…)
Welp, the Bears paid Jay Cutler. Paid him like they landed on Boardwalk with three hotels and a Risk ten-army on top. (You make some rules changes to get through Chicago winters.) And whether or not you agree they overpaid for No. 6, all Bears fans can agree the defense has to get fixed real quick-like.
With the 14th pick in the upcoming draft, the Bears have a shot at a great playmaker on defense, such as Michigan State cornerback Darqueze Dennard, Florida defensive end Dominique Easley, or even Alabama safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. If you're not a big college football fan, I feel I must assure you that final name is not a "Key & Peele" gag. Really.
But if your team needs an instant boost, there's no better way than free agency. Even after the new deals signed by Cutler, cornerback Tim Jennings, fullback Tony Fiammetta, kicker Robbie Gould and guard Matt Slauson, the Bears remain about $11.5 million under the 2014 salary cap. And that's before restructuring or cutting Julius Peppers' huge contract, so expect them to have around $20 million to blow. Much like the example of Riskopoly above, the Bears need to get creative to patch those holes.
Let's go shopping!
HENRY MELTON, DT
Ohhh yeah, that guy! Melton's season-ending injury effectively put a big flashing arrow pointing straight up the gut of the Bears defense. The Bears allowed 161.4 rushing yards per game in 2013, and 101.7 with him in 2012. His off-field incident probably didn't raise his asking price around the league.
Cash flow: $8,000,000 spent, $12,000,000 remaining
CHRIS GAMBLE, DB
Carolina cut its all-time interception leader after deciding not to—uh, gamble—on his high salary cap number. So the veteran retired. But even after not playing in 2013, he's only 30 years old. POPPIN' TAGS, AMIRITE? *high five up, left hanging by everyone*
Cash flow: $2,200,000 spent, $9,800,000 remaining
TERRELL OWENS, WR
I mean, he's tall and could probably play some coverage and isn't doing anything right now.
Cash flow: $25 (for a couple of sandwiches) spent, $9,799,975 remaining
I mean, like, 1,280 boxes of nails. The big ones they use for roofing, man. Just dump 'em out at the line of scrimmage every down. 80 defensive snaps per game, 16 games next season,
Cash flow: $8.99 per box = $11,507.20 spent, $9,788,467.80 remaining
ASHTON KUTCHER, STOPPER
I mean, if the guy can stop the momentum of "Two And a Half Men," he can stop Reggie Bush, right? And at $750,000 per episode, they can just use him for divisional games.
Cash flow: $4,500,000 spent, $5,288,467.80 remaining
It's all around you.
Cash flow: Free, $5,288,467.80 remaining
USED F-14 FIGHTER JET, SAFETY
I know a guy in Panama. And Chris Conte is NOT allowed to even TOUCH this thing.
Cash flow: $5,126,032 spent, $162,435.80 remaining
And y'know what, George McCaskey, I'll take that $162K for myself. Call it a finders' fee for that next Lombardi trophy.
RedEye special contributor Alex Quigley can be heard on WGN Radio 720.
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