Ed Oliver trade rumors to Bears gain momentum
Mark Konezny - USA Today Sports

Ed Oliver trade rumors to Bears gain momentum

by - Senior Writer -

Well, this is some fun stuff to wake up to in the morning. In case you missed it, some reports were coming out overnight that seemingly came out of nowhere, and fans should be intrigued about it.

No matter who plays QB in the NFC North this season, the Bears still need defensive help, especially on the line, as they had the fewest sacks and pressures of any team last year. That is why fans should pay close attention to the most recent rumor, as current Buffalo Bills defensive lineman Ed Oliver is being linked to the Bears as a possible trade candidate.

That could be mainly due to his Instagram post that had pictures of him sacking every QB not named Justin Fields in the division and saying he enjoyed himself. There was then a line from a 2 Chainz song stating Tomorrow, Tomorrow, Tomorrow, which had the Internet blowing up and had people thinking a deal was close to being completed.

Well, a deal could happen, but at this point, it is only rumors, but rumors often have merit to them.

Oliver is an explosive player and has been one of the better DTs in the game for the past several years. The 25-year-old is entering the final season of his rookie deal and already has a former teammate playing LB in Chicago, so you can bet those two will talk about linking up in Chicago.

Going back to last season, Oliver had a down year when you look at his previous seasons, but he still put up numbers worth noting. Oliver finished the season with 34 tackles, nine tackles for a loss, and 2.5 sacks. However, his 14 QB hits are worth nothing, as he was still getting to the QB quite frequently, even if the sack numbers were not there.

Despite Oliver not putting up huge numbers, he does rank in the top half of his position grade when it comes to rushing the QB. That is noteworthy, as the sack numbers will start to increase as long as he keeps the pressure on. Not only does Oliver have the potential to reach another gear, but adding his presence alone would solidify the interior spot on the Bears defensive line and will allow Chicago to address other needs in different ways.

Looking at Oliver's career through four seasons, you have a guy that has played in nearly every game seeing action in 62 of 65 total games. During that time, he has accumulated 151 tackles (55 solo), 30 tackles for a loss, and 42 QB hits. In other words, he is someone always around the QB, even if specific numbers don't show that.

If you take what he has done across four years and average it out to a single season, you are looking at a player who averages 41 tackles, eight tackles for a loss, and 12 QB hits. Those are all better numbers than anyone on this team has right now, and they will undoubtedly increase with more defensive talent this year.

Looking at Oliver's numbers and people are still not sold on him. However, please look at what Daron Payne did across his first four seasons before breaking out in season five. Payne played in 64 games and picked up 227 tackles, with 129 coming as solo. He added 22 tackles for a loss and 35 QB hits, as he was always in the backfield on plays.

No one is saying that Oliver will break out and be the next Payne, but you have to at least discuss it, given the trajectory he has gone through. He is a steady player that has been consistent through four seasons and is looking for a breakout year.

If I am the Bears, I kick the tires on this idea to see how serious the Bills would be to trade for him and what it would cost. Given that he is in the final year of his deal, the price tag for Oliver won't be a ton, and by season's end, it could be the steal of the offseason. Get ready for things to get interesting over the next month or so at Halas Hall.

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