Former Bears receiver Alshon Jeffery signed a one-year, $14 million deal with the Eagles Thursday, choosing them over a long-term offer from the Vikings and perhaps a reunion with the Bears. He had 52 receptions for 821 yards and two touchdown catches.
Jeffery, who was drafted by the Bears in 2012, has signed a one-year contract with the Philadelphia Eagles, the team announced Thursday as National Football League free agency opened. He was healthy in 2013, playing in 16 games and catching 89 balls for 1,421 yards on 148 targets, with seven touchdowns, earning him Pro Bowl honors.
That they never made it back was for many other reasons, but none having to do with lack of talent at wide receiver.
When asked why he chose the Eagles, Jeffery explained that it was the best decision for him and his family.
Also, the Chicago Tribune's Brad Biggs said moments after Jeffery signed with Philadelphia that he got a sense from people that Jeffery was intent on leaving the Bears.
Stuck in an offense that didn't feature many explosive players, Wentz topped the 300-yard passing threshold just four times all season, despite attempting 607 passes (37.9 per game).
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But it's clear Jeffery would have likely commanded a heftier contract - either in length or dollar amount - had he not failed a test for performance-enhancing drugs past year.
Entering on a one-year, $14 million dollar deal, Jeffrey was possibly the top free agent on the market.
But general manager Ryan Pace didn't seem bothered that the Bears' best playmaker from last season settled for a one-year, prove-it deal. "I think it's very important that each of these guys bring in their own individual skill set". Jeffery followed that season up with a career-high 10 touchdown catches in 2014 while adding 1,133 receiving yards.
More details as they become available.
The Philadelphia Eagles gave rookie quarterback Carson Wentz the keys to the kingdom immediately in 2016. The Eagles now have two players who can do that in Smith in Jeffery, but in much different ways. The Bears are still in ongoing discussions with Jeffery's party.
As it sits now, Kevin White, Cameron Meredith and the newly signed Markus Wheaton are the top three receivers on the Bears' depth chart.