Bears activating Roquan Smith from the PUP list is a power move

Now that the Chicago Bears have delisted Roquan Smith from the PUP list, visuals suggest it looks more like a power move by the organization.

On Tuesday, Chicago Bears linebacker Roquan Smith released a lengthy Twitter statement demanding a trade from the organization. General Manager Ryan Poles later addressed the media, citing his desire to extend Smith long-term.

A day later, ESPN Courtney Cronin reported that the Bears had the All-Pro linebacker checked off the Physically Unable to Perform list, meaning Smith is eligible to practice. However, after seemingly staging a hold-in, Smith now has to watch the Bears use this as a power move.

By activating him from within the PUP, the bears can now punish him for not practicing. That wasn’t the case as Smith dealt with an undisclosed injury. That fine for a player holding on to the last year of their rookie deal, $40,000/day. Cronin reports that this isn’t mandatory, but the bears have the option to do so.

Bears: Activation of Roquan Smith from PUP list is leverage

It’s not hard to see why the Chicago Bears should pay Roquan Smith. He’s their best defensive player now that Khalil Mack is joining the Chargers. Drafted 8th overall in 2018, Smith was an integral part of the 2018 NFC North Championship Chicago team that narrowly advanced in the playoffs against the Eagles.

At the same time, however, the Bears are technically in a rebuild, and Ryan Poles and Matt Eberflus are in charge and have a vision of how they want this team to be. Smith has all the physical qualities they want but right now they need more than just a player to achieve their goal.

Roquan Smith is undoubtedly a talented player and would be an asset to any team, including the Chicago Bears. But the way he did his business isn’t a good move, and now the bears have drawn their might against him. It’s a waiting game to see what happens after these recent events. Bears activating Roquan Smith from the PUP list is a power move

John Verrall

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