Examining Bears' wide receiver trade, free agent options as injuries mount

·3 min read

Examining Bears' WR trade and free agent options as injuries mount originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The Bears' wide receiver corps wasn't anything to write home about coming into camp. But after 11 days, the picture has worsened as injuries continue to mount.

N'Keal Harry suffered what appeared to be a significant ankle injury Saturday. There is no timetable for his return. Byron Pringle will be out for a while with a quad injury, although head coach Matt Eberflus said he was optimistic the wide receiver would return for Week 1. Meanwhile, Velus Jones Jr. and Dante Pettis are nursing "day-by-day" injuries, and David Moore was carted off the practice field Tuesday with a leg injury.

The Bears feel good about where Jones is in his rehab, and it sounds like the rookie will be able to return soon. There is no word on Pettis' recovery timeline.

With four of the Bears' top six receivers out, Chicago might want to look at the free agent or trade market for reinforcements if the health of Jones and Pettis doesn't improve soon.

So, here's a list of a few options still available should the Bears dip their toes back into the receiver waters:

Odell Beckham Jr.

I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the 29-year-old off the top, even if he's not a realistic option for the Bears.

Beckham remains a free agent while he recovers from a torn ACL, but his focus appears to be on teams with legitimate title aspirations.

The Los Angeles Rams reportedly still are interested in re-signing the star receiver, and Beckham has recently flirted with the idea of joining the Buffalo Bills on social media.

He's available, but the Bears aren't in the picture.

Will Fuller

The 28-year-old speedster is still searching for a home for the 2022 season. Given Fuller's injury history and lukewarm market, he might be a solid low-risk option for the Bears.

Fuller played in just two games last season for the Dolphins due to injuries and a PED suspension. Fuller hasn't played in more than 11 games since his rookie season in 2016.

The Bears would benefit from adding Fuller's ability to stretch the field vertically. Justin Fields is a terrific deep ball thrower, but the Bears currently lack weapons to consistently threaten the defense in the deep part of the field.

Fuller wouldn't be a bad reinforcement option if the Bears can get him at a discount.

T.Y. Hilton

The 32-year-old Hilton is "still in the mix" to return to the Colts, general manager Chris Ballard told the media at the start of training camp. The Dallas Cowboys also have been mentioned as a potential landing spot should Hilton want to continue his career.

Hilton is familiar with Eberflus from their time together in Indy, and the Bears could use a veteran presence in their receiving corps.

However, it feels like it's Indy or bust for Hilton.

Preston Williams, Miami Dolphins

Onto the trade market we go.

Preston has publicly asked for opportunities in Miami, but The MMQB's Albert Breer reported the Dolphins are taking calls on the 25-year-old receiver.

Williams has flashed at times during his three-year career, catching 56 passes for 787 yards and seven touchdowns. However, he has played in just 24 of 49 games and did not catch a touchdown last season.

The 6-foot-5 receiver likely could be had for a sixth- or seventh-round pick, so he might be worth a gamble if the Bears are desperate.

Jalen Reagor, Philadelphia Eagles

The former first-round pick has had a disappointing start to his career with the Eagles.

Reagor has caught 64 passes for 694 yards and three touchdowns through two seasons.

There have been whispers early in camp that Reagor could be on the trade block after the Eagles traded for A.J. Brown this offseason and drafted DeVonta Smith last year.

If the Eagles do want to cut bait with Reagor, the Bears could offer a late Day 3 pick to take a chance on his 4.3 speed.

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