Good morning, frents!
How early is too early to start keeping an opening day tracker here?
(We're currently at Mark Buehrle days until official baseball.)
Knicks 107, Bulls 103
Hurricanes at Hawks (7, NBCSCH)
Weighing a Raider reunion
Derek Carr has entered the chat.
The Las Vegas Raiders quarterback hasn't been among the quarterbacks mentioned as someone possibly on the move this offseason. Scott and I didn't even mention him in our lengthy breakdown on YouTube last week.
But that changed on Tuesday when Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal put out some trade kindling that quickly caught fire. Another tweet from a professional attention-getter got some traction, though it was one of several darts he threw on the day.
Bonsignore's speculation, though, is this: The Raiders would be willing to trade Carr if another team was willing to package at least two first-round picks, which they could in turn trade to Houston to acquire Deshaun Watson.
I hate that idea right off the bat because if you've made the decision to move multiple first-rounders, it better be to get the best quarterback in the deal. I don't care how nutty this quarterback market might get or how bad the Bears might need a quarterback. If the Bears are already OK reaching into their meager high-level assets and giving up two first-rounders, then they need to get creative to push the Raiders and Carr off to the side and bring a bigger deal directly to the Texans to get Watson.
If you're going to hamstring your team, it better be 100 percent worth it for the player you're getting back.
That said, I like Derek Carr. Pretty much always have.
The former Fresno State star is coming off his third straight 4,000-yard season and threw 27 touchdowns to nine interceptions. He'll turn 30 at the end of March and has two years left on his contract. His cap hit for his new team would come to just over $19 million for each year while giving the Raiders some much-needed salary relief. (Sportrac has a good guide to the financials of every QB on the carousel.)
Could I imagine Carr in a Bears uniform and rejoining Class of 2014 draft partner Khalil Mack?
I could. Carr would finally give the Bears a quarterback with the power to consistently throw the deep ball and maybe even the first 4,000-yard passer in the team's history. After watching Mitch Trubisky for the past four years, it'd be nice to watch a quarterback that can make reads and really never plays scared.
Carr's two-year contract is attractive too since if it doesn't work out, the next Bears leadership regime won't be tied to both getting out from under bad money and having no picks.
But the Bears aren't going to get Carr on a bargain and probably not without the Raiders upgrading to someone like Watson.
So it bears repeating: If Ryan Pace and Matt Nagy are set on giving up a lot of draft capital to get their next quarterback, they need to figure out a way to get the best prize on the market.
Not pay a premium to let someone else walk away with it.
Name the three QBs taken ahead of Derek Carr in the 2014 NFL draft.
Bulls brick their way to a loss
No idea how you shoot 6-of-36 from behind the three-point lead and still only lose by four points, but the Bulls somehow did it on Wednesday night.
- The 107-103 loss to the Knicks split the back-to-back series and dropped the ever inconsistent Bulls to 8-12.
- They'll now travel to Orlando to face the Magic in games on Friday and Saturday night.
- That Zach dunk, though.
Alex Colome signs with Twins
The Liam Hendriks signing almost certainly spelled the official end as Colome's run as the Sox closer. But the Sox might still see a decent amount of him as the Twins signed him to a one-year deal worth $5 million. He was reportedly lured up north by friend Nelson Cruz, who re-signed with the Twins for one year and $13 million on Tuesday.
1. Patrick Mahomes' one college pitching outing came against Northern Illinois. It didn't go well, but he got a standing ovation anyway. Frank Schwab caught up with the Huskies 2B who faced the future NFL star. (Yahoo Sports)
2. Today is the 14th anniversary of Devin Hester's return in Super Bowl XLI. Back in the early days of this newsletter, I looked at other iconic Chicago sports moments that occurred in losses. No, I would not add Javon Wims' dropsies to this list if I wrote it again. (Midway Minute)
3. The Washington Post ranked all 55 Super Bowls by quarterback matchup. The two involving the Bears did not fare well. (WaPo)
4. Ah yes, love to get Michael Kopech spring training news from celebrity magazines. (US Weekly)
5. Shoutout to the Downers Grove residents who spend every winter building the giant snow penis you might have seen on your social media feeds. (Patch)
Trivia answer: Blake Bortles (3), Johnny Manziel (22) and Teddy Bridgewater (32) were all taken ahead of Carr (36). (A good reminder the best quarterback of the draft is not necessarily among the first few taken.)
Finally, Carlton Fisk and Ron Kittle with an unidentified fan.