You ever see one of those scenarios in sports that seems too good to be true? Chances are, it is. There’s been a lot of talk today about Tee Higgins being a possible trade candidate. Naturally the skill position needy Bears are a team that pops up in the rumor mill. Higgins is a good Wide Receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals but he isn’t great, yet. I’ve even seen some call him “elite” and I’m not sure Higgins is a top 15 player at his position.
So the question begs to be asked, should the Bears trade for the six-foot-four-inch receiver before next season? One would initially think that he’d be a great fit and just needs a shot to prove he’s a “number one”. But at what cost? Firstly, Higgins is what you describe as a good football player but he isn’t actually a great athlete. According to RAS (relative athletic score) which is a metric that tracks testing from the NFL combine and Pro Days of all players coming into the draft, Higgins graded at a 4.16 out of a possible 10. Make no mistake, he’s produced in spite of his poor testing coming off of two back to back 1,000 yard seasons. However, he doesn’t fit the athletic profile General Manager Ryan Poles has seemed to chase with the majority of acquisitions being 8 out of 10 or higher on the RAS scale.
Still, it’s worth considering but at what costs is it worth having Higgins? Will Poles fork over a first round pick and a future contract that could exceed 25 million dollars annually? The Bears just gave away the 32nd overall pick for Chase Claypool and the jury is still out on whether it was worth it. Beyond the price, what about the fit for Higgins? He isn’t a great separator and Justin Fields seems to like and/or need options who get open and create space more than receivers who can “go up and get it”. Again, Higgins doesn’t fit the bill in this category either.
All in all, Higgins would be an exciting addition, but for the reasons listed above, Poles likely doesn’t pull the trigger. We’ll wait and see how aggressive he ends up being but I have a feeling the aggression will be in the free agency, not the trade market. So yea, Tee is too good to be true.