Bears

Thomas: "I'm ready to make my mark"

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Thomas: "I'm ready to make my mark"

The Chicago Bears agreed to a one-year contract yesterday with free agent wide receiver Devin Thomas. Thomas is coming off last years Super Bowl run with the New York Giants. Foxsports.coms Alex Marvez and myself caught up with Devin Thomas last night on SiriusXM NFL radios Late Hits to discuss joining the Chicago Bears and his assessment of his NFL career thus far.

Chicago is a team with great tradition and history, Thomas said. They have been a team I always admired growing upI understand that they are a hard-nosed team, and thats the type of player I am. I feel very blessed to be going to the Chicago Bears.

This will be Devins fifth NFL season since being selected in the second round of the 2008 NFL draft by the Washington Redskins. Thomas acknowledged his pro career has been underwhelming so far but stated, I finally learned how to be a professional in New York. It allowed me to understand and really know how to maintain myself and play this game in a winning program.

Thomas has a history of consistent special teams play since college while playing for Michigan State. Thomas has continued his special teams production in the pros, averaging 24 yards per kick return and recovering the key muffed punt in New York's NFC Championship game victory last year against San Francisco. Thomas is confident about playing special teams for the Bears, stating, Im an athlete, however they want to use me, Im ready to do it. Im not shying away from anything.

As for the Bears' renewed focus to run the football under new offensive coordinator Mike Tice, Thomas commented you gotta earn your keep. Blocking for your running backs, you gotta bring your hard hat.

Thomas jumped at the opportunity to sign with the Bears because Chicago was gung-ho to sign me and ready to make a move.

Coming off a Super Bowl victory where he celebrated in tears with his son, Thomas agreed with my assessment that he is a dangerous player right now in his career. Thomas stated, Ive had to bite down and dig deep. Im ready to make my mark.

Predicting the value of Roquan Smith's rookie contract with Bears

Predicting the value of Roquan Smith's rookie contract with Bears

Chicago Bears first-round pick Roquan Smith remains unsigned, a situation that prior to the rookie wage scale would've been cause for concern. With contracts now based on slotting, or where a first-round pick is selected, there's little reason or room for agents to haggle over terms. A holdout isn't expected.

There have been some exceptions to this general principle, however. Joey Bosa, who was selected with the third pick by the Chargers in 2016, held out until August 29 over offset language and his signing bonus. So, while a holdout for Smith is unlikely, it's not impossible.

Assuming he agrees to a contract on time, here's what the terms of his deal should look like, according to CBS Sports:

2018 Cap Number: $3,349,485
Signing Bonus: $11,517,940
Four-year value: $18,477,168

If the numbers are correct, Smith will have the 17th-highest cap hit for the Bears in 2018, according to Spotrac. By comparison, Danny Trevathan has a $7.15 million cap hit this season.

Drafting well is critical for long-term success. If a general manager misses on first-round picks, the cap consequences mount over time. Consider Kevin White, the seventh-overall pick in 2015. He has zero touchdowns in his pro career but has a $5.27 million cap hit this year. Leonard Floyd, the team's first-rounder in 2016, has a $4.30 million cap hit and Mitch Trubisky, last year's second pick overall, is $6.59 million. Pace's four first-round picks, when counting Smith's expected deal, are four of the top-17 paid players on the payroll even though none of them have the production to back it up.

Smith, however, is as close to a bust-free prospect as the Bears have drafted in Pace's tenure. He was considered one of the best pure football players in the entire 2018 draft class and will start immediately alongside Trevathan as a rookie, assuming he's under contract in time to contribute in Week 1.

Which Bears have the highest player rating in Madden 19?

Which Bears have the highest player rating in Madden 19?

The time has come to start counting down to the release of Madden 19. The most popular football video game franchise of all-time is set to release in early August and as is a tradition with the weeks leading up to the game appearing on store shelves, leaks about features and player ratings have started.

Here are the highest rated Bears players in this year's edition:

Adrian Amos leads the way with an 88 rating, followed by Akiem Hicks (85) and Allen Robinson (85). 

Chicago's offense received a 75 overall rating, which should result in a significant challenge for Bears fans trying to score virtual points later this summer. The defense, however, will be stout, coming in with an overall rating of 81. Amos and Hicks have a lot to do with that.

Ratings are subject to change due to injury. Madden 19 is scheduled for release on August 10.