In a not-so-surprising move, the Chicago Bears are reportedly declining their fifth-year contract option for quarterback Mitchell Trubisky.
Trubisky, the team’s first round draft pick in the 2017 draft, could potentially become a free agent at the conclusion of the 2020 NFL season, according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero:
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport also corroborated the report.
“The team has liked Trubisky’s attitude since the Nick Foles trade, and it’ll be an open competition,” Pelissero said. “A chance for Trubisky to make himself a lot of money before his contract expires next March.”
The Bears were fast approaching a deadline to determine whether they would pick up Trubisky’s fifth year option. By declining the option, the Bears quarterback could potentially become a free agent after the 2020 season, but if he has a successful year, the Bears still have options to keep him, as they could either re-sign him to a new extension or apply the team’s franchise tag to him, preventing him from seeking a contract with another team.
In three seasons with the Bears, Trubisky has compiled a 23-18-0 record, completing 63.4 percent of his passes for 8,554 yards and 48 touchdowns. He has also thrown 29 interceptions and been sacked 93 times.
The 2019 season represented a step back for Trubisky, as he completed a lower percentage of his passes and threw for seven fewer touchdowns than he had in the previous season, despite throwing 82 more passes.
Earlier this offseason, the Bears sent a fourth round draft pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars to acquire Foles, who will compete with Trubisky for the team’s starting job.
Bears G.M. Ryan Pace has drafted four players in the first round of the NFL Draft, and is now 0-for-3 on keeping players beyond their first contract. The team also declined the options on wide receiver Kevin White and linebacker Leonard Floyd, and will face a decision next season on the contract of linebacker Roquan Smith.