Bears weren't willing to overpay for Melton

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by riczaj01, Mar 19, 2014.

  1. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    Bears weren't willing to overpay for Melton
    March, 18, 2014
    9:35PM ET
    By Michael C. Wright | ESPN.com

    Four days ago, in light of news that Henry Melton was the subject of a civil suit, we wrote that regardless of what might take place in a courtroom, the potential return of the defensive tackle was uncertain because of Chicago's unwillingness to overspend.

    With Melton posting on Twitter on Tuesday that he's signing with the Dallas Cowboys, let's put it out there right now: The Chicago Bears made the right move despite the fact they'll lose a talented player.

    Provided Melton makes a successful return from left ACL surgery, he appears destined to return to the Pro Bowl -- possibly on multiple occasions. But in addition to Melton's small body of work regarding consistency on the field, the Bears held some trepidation regarding his inconsistency off it. Bears general manager Phil Emery mentioned on Jan. 2 concern about Melton's “passion” for the game of football.

    It's also why the organization, after gifting Melton $8.45 million last season in the form of the franchise tag, made the conscious decision to not risk wasting money again. Melton was certainly deserving of a major payday considering he was coming off a 2012 season in which he posted six sacks on the way to making his first Pro Bowl. But the Bears got just three games worth of production the last time they invested heavily in Melton, and those three outings likely won't go down as the defensive tackle's strongest performances.

    Make no mistake about it: The Bears wanted to bring back Melton, because in Chicago's defensive system, he's the player who makes it all go. But the Bears stuck to their plan of bringing back Melton only at their own price, which is part of the reason he's headed to Dallas.

    "Henry, in particular, he has got to fully dedicate himself to rehab. He has to fully dedicate his mind and his focus to football, which is extremely important," Emery said back on Jan. 2. "And as I have sat down and talked to him, there was a reason we franchise-tagged him [last season]. There was a reason for that investment. The under-tackle position in the scheme that we're in is the engine that drives the defense. When he was in the game, even though from a statistical standpoint he wasn't off to a fast start, it was very evident on tape that he was a very important part of the defense. So he knows, and that has been related to him that we signed you for a reason. Now let's focus in on getting healthy, and obviously he has some off-the-field issues that he needs to make sure he's focused in on football and having a passion for football."

    The Bears made it clear from the beginning that they would not spend frivolously to bring back Melton, with Emery saying he “pretty much left it with [agent] Jordan [Woy] that [Melton] was gonna go through [the free-agent] process, and when he got through it, and he had a pretty good idea of what his market is, we could talk at that time.”

    But that time never came because Melton hit the market without the Bears ever making a contract offer, according to an NFL source who said “if you want to sign someone badly enough, you make offers and don't wait.”

    Apparently, the Cowboys jumped in quickly with a suitable deal for Melton, who is originally from Grapevine, Texas, a suburb of Dallas, after the defensive tackle also visited with the Minnesota Vikings, Seattle Seahawks and the St. Louis Rams. In Dallas, Melton will be reunited with Cowboys defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli, who served in the same capacity with the Bears from 2010-12, and has called the defensive tackle one of the most natural pass-rushers he's ever coached.

    Will Marinelli again coax the best out of Melton in Dallas? That's certainly likely.

    But the question marks concerning Melton in Chicago were too significant for the cap-strapped Bears to comfortably make a significant investment in him.
  2. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    This is how they have seemed to take every FA so far, this and last year. And I couldn't be happier about how Emery approaches FA.
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  3. sluggobear

    sluggobear Veteran

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    riczaj01, that was a good synopsis of the Melton situation. I wish him luck, but I'm okay with him leaving.
  4. DaTreeBears

    DaTreeBears Pro-Bowler

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    Melton is good player PERIOD. Look what Dallas gave him, 1 year 5 mill. if he doesn't play well see ya,if you do play well we got you locked in for 8 mil the next 2 years. Dallas got a good deal here if Melton plays like a probowler they got him cheap if fails they only lose a year of cash. I still don't believe he's a franchise player, a good player yes. After a blown ACL we'll all find out next year. My gut says he pulls a Tommy Harris and no he wasn't ever as good as Harris.
  5. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    Melton has been a good player before the injury, PERIOD. No one has any idea how he'll be now. Dallas go a hell of a deal, but we don't know if the Bears were allowed to match or were asked to give more, or once out of Chicago Melton was done.

    And no one will ever really know how it went down. Moving forward IF Melton returns to old Dallas got a steal, but IF not then they've wasted another year, but then again it's looking like they'll take a DT in the first so chaces are IF Melton isn't the guy he was in the past the rook will be taking more snap, then again there's a solid chance the rook will do that anyways, Melton was good, but he always lacked consistancy, he got his sacks in bunches, and completely disappeared for several games. I think the Bears moving on was probaly the best choice b/ if Melton comes back they probably don't draft a DT early this year.
  6. shark86x

    shark86x Pro-Bowler SuperFan

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    Has Urlacher said anything about this yet???

    I'm good with letting Melton go. Good player, but I don't think he was dedicated enough - Like Emery seems to believe. You're in rehab, you don't go out and get in troublre. Although I have to say I'll miss his monster commercial - Melton being the monster crawling out from under the bed to go beat up the monster in the closet.
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