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The Chicago Bears were just 5-11 last year, and it was not the fault of their defense. Chicago allowed only 319 ypg (10th) and 20.0 ppg (9th) as they ranked 9th in the league in points allowed and 10th in yards allowed. The defense was not great in the preseason as they allowed 23.6 ppg, but they hope that the addition of Khalil Mack will help out. The Bears made a trade with the Raiders for him, and the Bears gave him a big extension. Is he worth it? Let’s take a look.
Who Is Khalil Mack?
Mack was taken with the 5th overall pick in the 2014 draft by the Oakland Raiders and has spent four years with the team. The 27-year-old linebacker played for the Buffalo Bulls in college and had 28.5 sacks in his four years there. He is one of the best young defensive players in the league and was holding out with the Raiders until a new deal could be reached. The Raiders don’t have to worry about that now after trading Mack. What did they give up? That is an easy answer. They gave up the Farm.
In 2019, the Bears are giving up a 1st and a sixth-round pick. In 2012, they are giving up a first-rounder, a second-rounder, and a conditional fifth-rounder. Yikes. That is a lot, but wait, there’s more. After giving in to the huge demands of the Raiders, the Bears then signed Mack to a six-year $141 million extension. That’s an average of $23.5 million a year. Less than 24 hours ago, Aaron Donald (Rams) was made the highest paid defensive player in the history of the NFL. Now Mack has that distinction.
Is Mack Worth The Price?
He has been an All-Pro twice, played in three Pro Bowls and was Defensive Player of the Year in 2016. Mack is the only player ever to be chosen first-team All-Pro at two positions in the same year (2015). In his four years with the Raiders, he forced nine fumbles, recovered four, and has racked up 40.5 sacks. He had just four sacks in his first year but has been a beast ever since. Mack is a game changer and will give the Bears a much-needed playmaker on that side of the ball.
His numbers over the last three seasons show that he is well worth what the Bears will pay him over the next six years. The question is, was giving up five draft picks to get him worth it? The Bears did pay a hefty price to get him, but he does immediately upgrade a unit that was already very solid. I would say he is worth it. The Raiders also made out well. They still have a solid defense and now have five extra picks over the next two years. In the highly-competitive AFC West, the loss of Mack may have dealt a death-blow to the Raiders chances this season. But if Mack wasn't going to sign after this season, then they made a great deal. It may take a year or two, but the trade appears to be a win-win.