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Chicago Bears making moves

Gabe Carimi was a first round pick of the Chicago Bears just two years ago, but he was shipped out of town for a sixth round pick this weekend.

Offensive lineman Gabe Carimi was a first-round pick of the Chicago Bears just two years ago, but he was shipped out of town for a sixth-round pick this weekend.

After a relatively quiet period over the last few weeks, the Chicago Bears have been extremely active in the last 48 hours, making headlines for a trio of personnel moves: trading offensive lineman Gabe Carimi to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers; cutting fullback Evan Rodriguezö and signing Tony Fiammetta to replace him.

They also swapped out wide receivers Dale Moss and Demetrius Fields for Devin Aromashodu and Jerrell Jackson, but since these are not high-profile moves, merely a reshuffling of players who will be competing for roster spots, we will not discuss them here.

Move 1: Trade Gabe Carimi

Running back Matt Forte appears to be the only long-term offensive starter for the Chicago Bears drafted by Jerry Angelo.

Running back Matt Forte appears to be the only long-term offensive starter for the Chicago Bears drafted by Jerry Angelo.

News broke Sunday night that the Chicago Bears were trading offensive lineman Gabe Carimi to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a 2014 sixth-round pick.

This can be seen as nothing but a massive disappointment for the Bears, who selected Carimi in the first round in 2011. But Carimi struggled mightily last year after a knee injury cost him almost all of his rookie season. Carimi elected to skip Chicago’s organized team activities this year and was rumored to be on the roster bubble, so in that sense the team did a good job of getting something for him rather than simply cutting him for nothing.

This move now ensures that no first-round picks of former general manager Jerry Angelo remain on Chicago’s roster. New general manager Phil Emery, who replaced Angelo prior to the 2012 season, has completely remade the team in a little over a year, especially on the offensive side of the ball.

The only expected 2013 starters on offense who were drafted by Angelo are tackle J’Marcus Webb, center Roberto Garza, and running back Matt Forte. (Angelo acquired quarterback Jay Cutler via trade). Webb and Garza are both free agents after this season, meaning that Forte could be the only Angelo starter remaining on offense a mere three years after his departure.

Move 2: Sign fullback Tony Fiammetta

Move 3: Release fullback/tight end Evan Rodriguez

Fullback Evan Rodriguez ended up with more mug shots than seasons played while a member of the Chicago Bears.

Fullback Evan Rodriguez ended up with more mug shots than seasons played while a member of the Chicago Bears.

The last two moves are grouped together because they involve one player (Tony Fiammetta) replacing another (Evan Rodriguez) on the roster.

As a rookie last year, Rodriguez, a fourth-round pick in Phil Emery’s first draft class, showed the ability to be a solid blocker out of the backfield. His troubled past (he had been arrested in college for assault) resurfaced this offseason, when he was arrested twice on alcohol-related charges, including driving under the influence while he had a blood alcohol content more than double the legal limit.

Emery decided that Rodriguez was not worth the trouble and cut him yesterday, replacing him with a competent veteran in Fiammetta. This move sends a message to the many troubled players on whom Emery has taken a risk — including wide receivers Brandon Marshall and Marquess Wilson, linebacker D.J. Williams, offensive lineman Kyle Long, and defensive end Cornelius Washington — that while Emery is willing to give them a second chance, he is not going to hesitate to replace them if they mess up again in a Chicago Bears uniform.

Three lessons

One thing we can say for certain about Chicago Bears general manager Phil Emery is that he is not afraid to make bold moves.

One thing we can say for certain about Chicago Bears general manager Phil Emery is that he is not afraid to make bold moves.

All in all, the last 24 hours have taught us (or at least reinforced) three lessons about Chicago Bears general manager Phil Emery.

First, Emery clearly believes that Jerry Angelo was a terrible evaluator of offensive talent. This isn’t really a new revelation, but the dumping of Carimi reinforces what has been known for a while.

Second, Emery is not going to hesitate to cut the cord on a player getting in trouble off the field, even if that is a player he has invested resources in.

Third, Emery always seems to have a plan in place to sign a decent veteran to a short, cheap deal to plug a hole on the roster. He has done that several times this offseason, with players like D.J. Williams, linebacker James Anderson, offensive lineman Matt Slauson, and now Fiammetta. None of these players are expected to be stars, but all are capable of providing competent play that won’t hurt the team.

Having cheap, solid depth is essential for building a competitive team in the NFL, and Emery seems to be doing a good job using free agency to accomplish this.

805 comments
JVince 11
JVince 11

Why can't we just cut Hawk and keep Bishop and Jones...


I fucking hate Hawk... sure he stays the healthiest but he lays on his back more than Nate's Ex GF

G & G
G & G moderator

C'mon Bishop,take a fucking pay cut

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

Bears also signed Sedrick Ellis yesterday.

JVince 11
JVince 11

GB must really think that DJ Smith and Bishop had career changing or threatening injuries.. they just did not view their salaries as justified after an injury like that.  Bishop at age 28 coming off of a completely torn hamstring which is actually 3 muscles (if he tore all of them then holy shit).  Bishop was a game changer.. he was aggressive.. but I think that they would rather go the safe route with Hawk, Jones, Manning, and Lattimore and the rookies.  Paying him 1.8M in salary for the next two years is apparently more worth it than keeping him on the roster and paying him 8+M if they are worried around his leg for the next two seasons.


it sucks... but football is a game for the young man.  I hate to see Bishop go... but I do understand the business.

JVince 11
JVince 11

How the fuck is this "news"?


who gives a flying fuck about some 3rd string fullback.. Chicago doesn't even run an I backfield more than 10 times a game I bet....



MIBearFan
MIBearFan

The problem with Bishop is that you won't know if he can do his job until he's able to participate. It's not like they're stacked with talent at that position. What is the fall back plan?

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Demovsky: "Bishop has not participated in the Packers’ offseason program because he has not been cleared by the team doctors to return from his hamstring tendon injury of last August."

JVince 11
JVince 11

@Green and Gold I would love him to but you can't really restructure it... he has two years left and is slated to make 4M in each season... usually taking a pay cut refers to pushing the money back in the deal or giving a big signing bonus.. I don't see GB doing either...


They might do what they did with AJ Hawk.. cut him and then resign him.

LaCW
LaCW

@JVince 11 DJ Smith sucked before his injury so no surprise there. 

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@MIBearFan Supposedly there's a "logjam" over money, which means GB will keep him if it's on the cheap since no one wants to take the risk on a trade apparently.  Bishop will probably hit the FA streets. If no one else wants him he'll be back with GB probably.

AndrewLeT
AndrewLeT

@MIBearFan"Bishop did not respond to a Twitter direct message and his agent, Blake Baratz, did not respond to an iMessage." god i hate the world we have created. what the hell happened to making a phonecall

JVince 11
JVince 11

@LaCWrestler @JVince 11 I would disagree... DJ Smith was one of our best coverage LBs.. he was never going to be a long term starting MLB or a pro bowler.. but he was a solid fill in player.

JVince 11
JVince 11

@andylet445 @JVince 11 yea... but when it is written by Woude... he usually has some quote from the guy's HS coaches about how great he was and then goes to a "scout" on a random website to prove that this no named guy is going to be a game changer... if it would have been written by anyone else... I would have realized the sarcasm.

JVince 11
JVince 11

@MIBearFan @JVince 11 i think that Emery is restocking his lower cupboards of depth.  That was something that Chicago never had before was depth for injuries... it can cost team's a season if not done correct.  Sometimes have a good 5 man DL rotation is better than have 2 stars and 3 average guys.

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

@JVince 11 @MIBearFan  

Not sure. Emery is making a lot of moves. He likes to bring in proven vet talent, if the price is right. I think he is positioning the team for the future. He's not afraid to grab a free agent, but I think he believes in building through the draft.

JVince 11
JVince 11

@LaCWrestler @JVince 11 I thought he was a pretty good fill in guy... and he was our 2nd best coverage LB behind Bishop... neither Hawk nor Jones can cover a RB or TE for the life of them.

LaCW
LaCW

@JVince 11 @LaCWrestler I thought Smith had no range at all. He was way too slow to get to the outside on run plays or pass plays. 

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

@JVince 11 @andylet445 

Why do you and Woody have such a hardon for each other? If he didn't contribute as much as he does, it hard to imagine this site being what it is.  

The Bears hatred is strong in you.

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"No snaps" isn't meeting expectations.  He effectively wasn't there to evaluate last preseason.

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

@Mr._Horse @MIBearFan  

That wasn't a very glowing report.

"Expectations at the start of the season: Low

Expectations were...Not met "

MIBearFan
MIBearFan

@Mr._Horse  

I'm not trolling, just asking. I don't know anything about him either.

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@MIBearFan  He's inexperienced but the team seems to think he can play.  They probably know better than I do.

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 Preseason. They put him on IR in August.

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@Preparation_A  

In preseason I think.  And it was a complete rupture, needed surgery to reattach it.