Report: No trade market has emerged for Bears QB Justin Fields

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A trade market for Bears quarterback Justin Fields has yet to develop, ESPN reported on Tuesday, citing sources that most teams view the 2021 first-round pick as a backup.

Fields was widely expected to be in play for the Atlanta Falcons or Pittsburgh Steelers. Atlanta agreed to a reported $180 million contract with 35-year-old Kirk Cousins and the Steelers signed Russell Wilson at a discount rate with Denver paying most of the $39 million salary he’s guaranteed for 2024.

The modest market creates a conundrum in Chicago, where general manager Ryan Poles holds a pair of top-10 draft picks and the Bears are thought to be planning on using one of those selections on Southern California quarterback Caleb Williams.

The Bears hold the No. 1 pick in the draft because they opted to pass on Bryce Young of Alabama and No. 2 pick C.J. Stroud of Ohio State in 2023, instead dealing the rights to the top spot to the Panthers. Carolina traded wide receiver DJ Moore and their first-round picks in 2023 and 2024 to the Bears and selected Young.

Many of the teams still in the market for a quarterback are focused on a popular set of prospects in the 2024 draft with Williams, LSU’s Jayden Daniels, Drake Maye of North Carolina and J.J. McCarthy of Michigan being discussed as probable top-15 picks. Oregon’s Bo Nix and Washington’s Michael Penix Jr. are also on the radar as potential first- or second-round picks.

Fields, 25, still could find a new home this offseason. The Las Vegas Raiders agreed to a two-year deal with Gardner Minshew but are paying a backup rate to a potential placeholder starter and the New England Patriots, currently holding the No. 3 pick in the 2024 draft, might give Fields a shot if it becomes evident their preferred quarterback won’t be available at the top of the draft.

Value for first-round draft picks at quarterback nosediving is a familiar backdrop for general managers attempting to offload those players. The Patriots agreed to accept a sixth-round pick in exchange for Mac Jones, who was selected 15th in 2021, four spots after Fields went to the Bears.

The No. 3 pick in that draft, Trey Lance, was traded to the Dallas Cowboys from the San Francisco 49ers for a fourth-round pick.

The 2021 No. 2 pick, Zach Wilson, has drawn no interest after being given permission to seek a trade by the Jets last month.