One of the most important non-quarterback decisions that the Bears had to make this offseason was at inside linebacker, as three of the four ILB’s on the 2019 roster were set to become unrestricted free agents.
According to a new report, Ryan Pace and co. already have a decision in place. NFL Network’s Ian Rappaport is reporting that the Bears and Danny Trevathan have agreed on a three-year contract extension:
Sources: The #Bears have agreed to terms with LB and team leader Danny Trevathan on a 3-year extension. Some work before the league year officially opens with a key piece of their team.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 13, 2020
The contract, which runs through the 2022-2023 season, would keep the Bears’ starting linebacker core intact for the next three seasons, presuming the team chooses to exercise the club option in the final year of Roquan Smith's rookie contract.
Since joining the Bears in 2016, Trevathan has played in 46 games with 235 solo tackles, nine sacks, and three forced fumbles. Durability has been an issue at times – he’s only played a full season in Chicago once – but his veteran leadership is immensely valued on a defense with plenty of big-name talent.
It's also a notable decision in regards to the future of Nick Kwiatkoski. Earlier reports had claimed that Trevathan's backup was going to be a priority signing for the Bears, but many thought that his market had already outgrown where the team was comfortable going. The extension all but assures that Kwiatkoski's raise will come elsewhere.