The Chicago Bears and newly acquired edge rusher Montez Sweat have agreed to a four-year extension worth $98 million in new money, a league source confirmed Saturday. Here’s what you need to know:
- Sweat, 27, will receive $72.87 million guaranteed as part of the total deal worth $105 million, a league source confirmed. NFL Network first reported the contract details.
- The Washington Commanders dealt Sweat, in the final year of his rookie contract, to the Bears at the trade deadline earlier this week in exchange for a 2024 second-round pick.
- Sweat tallied 6 1/2 sacks this season for Washington. He has totaled 35 1/2 sacks in 67 games in his four-plus seasons with the Commanders.
What getting the deal done means for Chicago
GM Ryan Poles dispelled any worries that he wouldn’t be able to sign his new edge rusher, despite paying a second-round pick for Sweat. Getting this done prevents the Bears from the worst-case scenario, of Sweat being a rental, and it leaves the franchise tag open for the team to use on cornerback Jaylon Johnson, should they choose. By agreeing to terms so quickly, it also eliminates any distractions for both sides. The $24.5 million in average salary slots Sweat fifth in the NFL behind the Bosa brothers, T.J. Watt and Myles Garrett, and just ahead of the Packers’ Rashan Gary, who signed his new contract last week.
The Bears identified Sweat as a “multiplier,” Poles said, adding, “He’s going to allow everyone to play better, our entire defensive front, our corners, our safeties.” The defense desperately needs that, this year and into the future, and the Bears are paying big money for it. They believe that Sweat has both the on-field abilities and intangibles to be worth the investment. Now it’s on him to live up to it, and that begins Sunday in his Bears debut against the New Orleans Saints. — Kevin Fishbain, Bears staff writer
(Photo: Eric Hartline / USA Today)