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Brandon Marshall thinks Bears almost traded him to Patriots before 2014 season

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Brandon Marshall thinks Bears almost traded him to Patriots before 2014 season

Imagine Brandon Marshall celebrating a Super Bowl victory on a float next to Tom Brady and watching Rob Gronkowski crushing a beer on another.

In an impromptu appearance on ESPN 1000 Friday morning, the ex-Bears wide receiver revealed that he was almost traded to the Super Bowl XLIX champion New England Patriots prior to the 2014 season.

[MORE BEARS: Bears replace Brandon Marshall with his 'baby bro' Kevin White]

"I could've played for the Patriots last year," Marshall told ESPN 1000. "There was an opportunity where [the Bears] could have traded me before the season. There was a little tension [between Marshall's agent and the Bears] on the contract stuff. I thought I was worth a little more and I ended up settling. There were a couple of teams that were offering more money.

“It never got that far, but there was a possibility with a couple teams.”

After back-to-back Pro Bowl seasons with the Bears in 2012 and 2013, Marshall's production declined in a drama-filled 2014. In 13 games, he had 61 receptions for 721 yards and eight touchdowns before suffering a season-ending collapsed lung against the Dallas Cowboys in December, which ended up being Marshall's last game in a Bears uniform.

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Despite wanting to finish his career in Chicago the 31-year-old Marshall was traded on March 10 to the New York Jets for a 2015 fifth-round draft pick, which Bears GM Ryan Pace used on Penn State safety Adrian Amos.

Marshall mentioned to ESPN 1000 that he still spends his weekends in Chicago, but since getting dealt to the Jets he hasn't spoken with Bears quarterback Jay Cutler.

"Yeah, I just haven't talked to him," Marshall said. "We didn't talk at all, but it was kind of funny. Eric Decker sent out a picture of me relaxing with my feet up during downtime, and he sent out a group text to me, Brandon Stokley and Jay Cutler. So there was a little communication back and forth between those guys. But I haven't personally [talked to Cutler]."

Bill Belichick scoffs at Khalil Mack-Lawrence Taylor comparison

Bill Belichick scoffs at Khalil Mack-Lawrence Taylor comparison

All of the good graces Bill Belichick may have won on Tuesday afternoon -- when he compared the Bears' offense to Kansas City's -- are officially gone. 

Today, when talking to reporters, a Khalil Mack-Lawrence Taylor comparison came up. Belichick, who coached LT as the New York Giants’ defensive coordinator in the 1980s, was NOT having it: 

"Wait a minute, we’re talking about Lawrence Taylor now. I’m not putting anybody in (LT’s) class. Put everybody down below that. With a lot of respect to a lot of good players, we’re talking about Lawrence Taylor."

A bit harsh, Bill. 

For what it's worth, here's Khalil Mack's 2018 projection, assuming his latest ankle injury doesn't make him miss time: 

20 sacks, four interceptions, 16 forced fumbles, 4 fumble recoveries

That's .5 sacks less and four INTS, 16 FFs and 4 recoveries more than LT had in his 1986 MVP season. And yeah, maybe "they didn't record tackles/fumbles in 1986" and "16 forced fumbles would not only blow the current record (10) out of the water but is just plain unrealistic" but whatever, we're just sayin'. 

UPDATE: shocker, LT agrees: 

Matt Nagy gives update on the state of Khalil Mack's ankle

Matt Nagy gives update on the state of Khalil Mack's ankle

The Bears have seemingly dodged a bullet, for now. 

Following Tuesday's announcement that Khalil Mack would undergo further tests on the right ankle injury he sustained during Sunday's loss, Bears head coach had more optimistic news on Wednesday:

It could obviously get a lot worse than a day-to-day diagnosis, though not practicing on Wednesday might raise some eyebrows. 

It sounds like Mack is expected to be a go for Sunday's matchup with the Patriots, though as the Bears saw with the Dolphins' QB situation last week, things can change in a heartbeat.