- The Chicago Bears traded veteran defensive end Robert Quinn to the Philadelphia Eagles on Wednesday.
- Bears linebacker Roquan Smith was speaking with reporters when the news broke.
- “I have a lot of respect for that guy,” Smith told reporters as he fought back tears.
The Chicago Bears made a move towards their future on Wednesday, trading veteran defensive end Robert Quinn to the Philadelphia Eagles in exchange for a fourth-round draft pick in 2023.
With the trade deadline looming, the move makes sense for a Bears team that is looking to contend more in the future than the present, giving them an extra draft pick and freeing up some cap space over the next few years.
But while the move might make sense for the team from a business perspective, it doesn’t make the decision any easier for Quinn’s teammates in Chicago.
Linebacker Roquan Smith, another centerpiece of the Bears defense, was speaking with reporters when news of the trade broke.
“You know, I have a great deal of respect for that guy,” Smith said, fighting back tears.
—Sean Hammond (@sean_hammond) October 26, 2022
While the move is a rebuilding one for the Bears, it’s a boon for the Eagles, who are putting together a team that wants to win the Super Bowl right now.
Quinn was one of the best defensive players in football last year, his 18.5 sacks second only to T.J. Watt in the NFL.
Though Quinn has been less explosive so far this year, he should have more room to prosper in an Eagles defense that has more weapons for opposing offenses to worry about than Chicago does at the moment.
When the Eagles won the Super Bowl in 2018, the depth of their defensive front was a huge factor, with defensive end Brandon Graham forcing a fumble from Tom Brady that would ultimately seal Philadelphia’s first Lombardi Trophy.
With the addition of Quinn, the Eagles now have one more potential game-changing player in their quest for a second.