For the first time since 1947, the Chicago Bears have the first overall pick in the NFL Draft. Their Week 18 loss to the Minnesota Vikings and the Houston Texans’ victory over the Indianapolis Colts put the Bears and general manager Ryan Poles in the driver’s seat for the 2023 offseason.
The Bears are scheduled to have the most money to spend in free agency this year, and all signs point toward Poles opening the checkbook. Chicago can fill most of their holes along the offensive and defensive lines with free-agent signings, leaving the 2023 NFL Draft as a goldmine for the best available talent. With the No. 1 overall pick, Poles can select whoever he wants.
That’s a powerful feeling.
But it’s even more substantial than that. Poles and the Bears will be active in trade negotiations with the first overall pick. With Justin Fields already in place, Chicago won’t target a quarterback. And with Alabama’s Bryce Young worthy of being picked first, several QB-needy teams are likely to offer the Bears a king’s ransom to move into their draft position.