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Chalk Talk


Chalk Talk: Who are QBs Bears have traded for?

Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of questions from fans on

With the Bears acquiring Nick Foles, it made me wonder how many times they've traded for a quarterback. I remember the Jay Cutler deal, of course, but not many beyond that. Please enlighten me.
Aaron F.
Springfield, Illinois

Nick Foles is the seventh quarterback the Bears have acquired via a trade since the NFL-AFL merger in 1970. The others are Zeke Bratkowski (1972), Randy Mattingly (1974), Mike Phipps (1977), Steve Fuller (1984), Rick Mirer (1997), and as you mentioned, Jay Cutler (2009). I'm assuming that everyone reading this is familiar with the Cutler trade and his career with the Bears. So here's some information on some of the other quarterbacks the Bears have traded for: Phipps was acquired from the Browns in exchange for a 1977 fourth-round pick and 1978 first-round selection (No. 20 overall). He appeared in 31 games with 20 starts over five seasons with the Bears from 1977-81, completing 52.5 percent of his passes for 2,806 yards with 15 touchdowns, 27 interceptions and a 57.1 passer rating. He helped lead the Bears to a wild-card playoff berth in 1979, when he won nine of 10 starts. Fuller was acquired from the Rams in exchange for a 1984 11th-round pick and a 1985 sixth-round selection. He served primarily as Jim McMahon's backup in three seasons with the Bears from 1984-86, but Fuller compiled a 6-5 record as a fill-in starter. That included three straight wins during the memorable 1985 championship season by a combined score of 104-3. Mirer was acquired from the Seahawks along with a fourth-round pick in exchange for a first-round selection (No. 11 overall).

I'm a big fan of Roquan Smith, and I'm very curious how he's healing up from the pectoral injury he sustained. I am not hearing any buzz about his rehabbing and overall health. Can you share any insight?
Dave G.

With Halas Hall closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there's really not a lot of insight to share about linebacker Roquan Smith or any of his teammates who are recovering from injuries. Bears general manager Ryan Pace said at the NFL Combine in late February that he expected all the players who had offseason surgeries—Smith included—would be ready to start training camp without restrictions. Here's what Pace said about Smith specifically: "This is a fully recoverable thing for Roquan. When he was healthy last year and playing right, you saw the player that we drafted and why we took him so high. Our outlook on him is very optimistic."

I loved the recent photo gallery of the greatest Bears player to wear each uniform number (despite disagreeing with a couple choices). It made me wonder how many Bears would make the list if it included the entire NFL? I would not be surprised if they were near the top with their rich history!
Kevin T.
Dyer, Indiana

That's certainly an interesting question, and although I am quite biased, "The Athletic" recently made a list of the best NFL players to wear every number. As you'd suspect, there were seven players who spent either all or the majority of their careers with the Bears: Devin Hester (23), Walter Payton (34), Gale Sayers (40), Mike Singletary (50), Dick Butkus (51), Brian Urlacher (54) and Richard Dent (95). Two others spent only parts of their careers with the Bears: Alan Page (88) and Julius Peppers (90).

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