Former Chicago Bears defensive lineman Akiem Hicks signed a one-year, $10 million deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this offseason. It marked the end of an era for a beloved player. General manager Ryan Poles and coach Matt Eberflus didn’t prioritize Hicks’ return, so his decision to chase a Super Bowl ring in Tampa Bay made sense.
And there’s being teammates with that Tom Brady guy that helps, too.
Hicks met with Buccaneers reporters Tuesday and addressed how playing with an elite quarterback was a big part of his free-agent decision. He threw some serious shade at Bears quarterbacks along the way.
Look, Hicks isn’t wrong. The Bears’ quarterback situation has been among the NFL’s worst during his six years in Chicago. Jay Cutler was the best of a pre-Justin Fields bunch that includes Mike Glennon, Mitch Trubisky, Chase Daniel, Nick Foles, and Andy Dalton.
It’s unfortunate that Hicks is leaving now that the Bears do have a franchise quarterback. Fields is beginning the 2022 season as the unquestioned starter in Chicago, and his impact on the franchise will be massive.
Akiem Hicks, meanwhile, will play with the greatest quarterback of all-time. And he’ll do his part in helping Brady and the Buccaneers return to the Super Bowl in 2022.
Bryan is the founder and managing editor of Bears Talk. His previous stops include Bears coverage for NBC Sports Chicago and USA Today. His NFL Draft and Bears coverage has also been featured on The Draft Network.