May 19, 2024

The Chicago Bears have reached an agreement with the Buffalo Bills to acquire offensive lineman Ryan Bates pending a physical. This move, orchestrated by Ryan Poles, comes ahead of the new NFL league year, signaling an early effort by the Bears’ management to strengthen the team. In the deal, the Bears will send a fifth-round pick in the 2024 draft to Buffalo in exchange for Bates.

Pending completion of the physical examination, Bates, who has spent five seasons with the Bills, could bolster the Bears’ offensive line. Notably, Bates offers versatility, having played at both guard positions and center. With the Bears eyeing him as a potential starting center for the upcoming season, Bates’ experience and adaptability address a significant need for the team in 2024.

Ryan Bates won't be joining the Bears after Bills match offer sheet

Meanwhile, there’s speculation about the future of Rob Gronkowski, who remains undecided about playing in the 2022 NFL season. Reports suggest that if Gronkowski doesn’t re-sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, he might consider joining the Buffalo Bills. Playing for his hometown team would allow Gronkowski to be closer to home, adding an intriguing dimension to his free agency decision.

Gronkowski’s choice could also be influenced by the uncertain status of Tom Brady, his longtime teammate. Sources close to Brady indicate that he may be leaning towards retirement, potentially impacting Gronkowski’s decision-making process. Brady is expected to announce his decision in the coming days, with speculation swirling around whether he’ll continue his playing career or hang up his cleats.

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