With the Super Bowl now finished, all eyes are now on free agency and the 2024 NFL Draft. The Chicago Bears have an estimated $78 million in cap space. While also holding the first overall pick, so big moves are expected to be made by this franchise this off-season.

Free Agency

On February 15, it was announced that the Bears released their 2 longest tenured player: Offensive lineman Cody Whitehair and safety Eddie Jackson. Whitehair was a second round pick back in 2016 and he made a Pro Bowl appearance in 2018. Jackson was a fourth round pick in 2017 and made the Pro Bowl twice (2018, 2019) while also making First-Team All-Pro back in 2018.

While these 2 players had a great stint with the Chicago Bears, General Manager Ryan Poles didn’t believe they were a part of the team’s future plans. He wanted to clear up some cap space for free agency as they may be aggressive. Cutting Whitehair cleared $9.15 million, while releasing Jackson opened up $12.56 million. With $78 million in cap space this free agency period, the Bears now have the third highest cap in the NFL. They can be big spenders to fill out the rest of their roster.

NFL Draft

This has been the biggest talk since the Bears season has ended: What to do with the #1 overall pick? This decision will solely be based on who the team wants as their franchise quarterback moving forward. Do they believe in Justin Fields or do they want to move on and start fresh with USC star Caleb Williams?

Chicago acquired the first overall pick in this year’s draft via the Carolina Panthers from a trade last offseason. The Bears had the #1 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft and traded back to pick #9 held by the Panthers. To move up, Carolina gave up wide receiver DJ Moore along with additional picks, one being this year’s top selection.

Team Needs

The Bears showed improvement last season but there are still holes on this roster that need to be addressed. One of the weak spots on this team is at wide receiver. Chicago can look in free agency or consider drafting a rookie such as Marvin Harrison Jr. to play alongside DJ Moore.

Another team need is defensive back depth. The Bears need to come to an agreement with star cornerback Jaylon Johnson. After releasing Eddie Jackson a replacement safety would be needed.

Chicago should also look into addressing the defensive line this offseason. They could lose 2 of their top sack leaders in Yannick Ngakoue and Rasheem Green due to free agency. After trading for Montez Sweat midseason, an addition of another pass rusher will definitely help this defensive unit next year.

Lastly, the interior offensive line could use improvement, whether that’s through the draft or free agency. The release of Cody Whitehair opens up an interior offensive line position and due to injury, it would be smart for Chicago to add some depth at this position.


The Bears have a bunch of decisions to make regarding the future of their team heading into the 2024-25 NFL season. All eyes around the league will be around them as once they make their decision, all the other domino effects will follow. With the NFL Combine approaching, the clock for the Chicago Bears is ticking.

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