Chicago Bears make it official, sign QB Andy Dalton

Jan 3, 2021; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Andy Dalton (14) throws a pass against the New York Giants in the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bears announced their new quarterback acquisition — but sorry, Chicago fans. His name is not Russell Wilson.

Despite a social media outcry over the team coming to terms with Andy Dalton a day earlier, the Bears officially signed the 10-year veteran to a one-year contract, the Bears announced Wednesday.

Though the team did not reveal the contract terms, multiple outlets reported the deal is worth $10 million, with ESPN reporting another $3 million is available in incentives.

The Bears reportedly were in pursuit of Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, but turned to Dalton when the Seahawks decided to not trade their seven-time Pro Bowl selection after Chicago general manager Ryan Pace offered multiple first-round picks and more, according to NFL Network.

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Dalton is the latest veteran being picked up in hopes of solidifying the Bears’ quarterback position. The team signed Nick Foles last offseason to compete with Mitch Trubisky (originally the No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft), but the decision proved ineffective.

Foles went 2-5 as a starter after taking over in during a Week 3 game against the Atlanta Falcons, passing for 10 touchdowns on the season with eight interceptions.

Trubisky started the first three games of 2020, then regained the job in Week 12. He rallied the Bears to victories in three of their last four games to earn a spot in the playoffs, where they were eliminated by the New Orleans Saints in the wild-card round.

The Bears declined to pick up Trubisky’s fifth-year option, making him a free agent.

Dalton took over as the Dallas Cowboys starter after Dak Prescott came away with a gruesome ankle injury in a Week 5 game against the New York Giants. The 33-year-old went 4-5 as the Cowboys starter, passing for 2,170 yards with 14 TDs and eight interceptions in 11 games (nine starts).

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In 10 career seasons, Dalton has passed for 33,764 yards and 218 touchdowns with 126 interceptions. He played his first nine seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals after he was a second-round draft pick in 2011 out of TCU. In his first five NFL seasons, Dalton’s Bengals had winning records in all five with four 10-plus win seasons. But he has posted losing records as a starter in each of his last five seasons.

In the same announcement, the Bears also announced they also re-signed offensive lineman Germain Ifedi. The 26-year-old played in Chicago last season, starting all 16 games (10 at right tackle, six at right guard). He spent his first four years with Seattle after being taken by the Seahawks in the first round (No. 31 overall) in 2016.

–Field Level Media