Lance Briggs is 31. He's a great player. But he and Brian Urlacher can't continue to perform at a Pro Bowl level much longer.
It's time for the Bears to look toward the future. A new GM likely means a new head coach when Lovie Smith's contract expires. And the offense is young. (Wide receiver is still a gaping hole, but that can be fixed with a savvy draft pick or two.) The problem is, the offense will finally mature around the time our defensive greats will be two steps too slow.
Look at a team like New England. Somehow, they're in the Super Bowl, but their defense is completely suspect. They're loaded with draft picks and Briggs could help them immensely. A team could squeeze maybe three more quality years out of Briggs. So if the Bears deal him to a contender who needs help today, the rewards down the road could be rich.
It wouldn't be a popular move. But it's not like when Jerry Reinsdorf dismantled the Bulls. These Bears haven't won a title. And they're still two-to-three years away from competing. So our target has to be two-to-three years from now. That means drafting and grooming new talent.
Sometimes you have to take a step back to take a step forward.