Last winter, it was apparent all was not well between the Chicago Bears and star wide receiver, Allen Robinson. Despite another terrific season in 2020, the two sides had not spoken in any meaningful way about a contract extension. Something that would’ve seemed like a foregone conclusion in most cases. Reports from multiple insiders suggest the two sides were talking by the beginning of October of 2020.
However, there were reportedly so far apart on a number that eventually, talks broke off completely. Robinson felt he deserved to get paid like one of the five best receivers in the NFL. Something that would’ve cost $20 million per year or more. GM Ryan Pace and the Bears front office didn’t believe he was worth that much. They felt he was closer to the $16 million per year level alongside Brandin Cooks, Adam Thielen, and Robert Woods.
Neither side was willing to budge after that.
Robinson was franchise tagged last offseason and spent 2021 playing the worst season of his career. Just 410 yards and one touchdown in 12 games. He believes this is because head coach Matt Nagy and his staff intentionally shifted the passing game away from him. Part of that might be true, but Robinson never quite seemed at his best even when he was targeted. Uncharacteristic drops. A general lack of urgency. All of it culminates in maybe the most ironic moment of his career. Check out his current contract projections, courtesy of Pro Football Focus.
Get Allen Robinson paid 💰 pic.twitter.com/Ni0ileUmEy
— PFF Fantasy Football (@PFF_Fantasy) February 19, 2022
If you missed it, that averages out to $16 million per year. The exact number the Bears felt Allen Robinson was worth when negotiations began. If this projection is accurate, it leaves the wide receiver with two choices. Neither of them is particularly appetizing. Either he takes that deal, accepting the money Chicago wanted to pay him in the first place and earning a bruised ego in the process. Or he opts for a one-year deal with another team, gambling that he can perform well in 2022 and earn a bigger contract in 2023.
One option doesn’t put him in the top five tier where he thinks he belongs. The other has him sacrificing another year of his prime continuing to chase that bigger payday. It is unfortunate things got to this point for him and the Bears.
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