With all the talk about whether or not the Bears could reach an agreement on a long-term deal with Allen Robinson this offseason, it appears another player wants to lock in his future in Chicago too. According to Adam Schefter, Akiem Hicks’ agent, Drew Rosenhaus, has reached out to the Bears to begin negotiations on an extension. Rosenhaus was spotted in Chicago on Thursday and said Hicks would like to finish his career with the Bears, per Schefter’s report.
Hicks is currently playing on the last year of his four-year, $48 million contract. Ryan Pace initially signed Hicks before the 2016 season and rewarded him with an extension one day before the 2017 regular season began.
Throughout his tenure in Chicago, Hicks has been a cornerstone of the defense. Since 2016, his 27.5 sacks rank second on the team behind only Khalil Mack’s 30 sacks. He’s played a key role as a run-stuffer beside Eddie Goldman as well.
Earlier this year, Hicks’ name was thrown around in trade rumors as a possible casualty to the cap crunch that affected all NFL teams. But in the end the Bears cut ties with Kyle Fuller, and it was Hicks who stayed.
According to Spotrac, the Bears have over $38 million in cap space for the 2022 season. Big contracts due to come off the books next season一 besides Hicks’一 include Andy Dalton ($10 million cap hit in ‘21), Jimmy Graham ($10 million) and Allen Robinson ($17.88 million). In addition, key players who will likely command bigger deals, like Roquan Smith, James Daniels and Bilal Nichols are set to enter free agency if they aren’t extended.