Roquan Smith reportedly could not take part in Chicago Bears coaching camp amid contract frustrations

Chicago Bears linebacker Roquan Smith isn’t planning to take part within the early levels of coaching camp, according to an NFL Network report, as a result of he’s sad with the route of negotiations for a attainable contract extension.

It is unclear at this level whether or not Smith will report back to camp on time Tuesday however decline to partake in practices, subsequently avoiding fines for being a camp absentee. His different choice could be to carry out from camp altogether — and be topic to the accompanying monetary punishment — till contract talks transfer in a route he approves of.

Smith is coming into the fifth season of his rookie contract and is considered by most across the NFL as the largest constructing block on a Bears protection that has undergone main adjustments the final two seasons. Smith was a second-team All-Pro in every of the final two seasons and is ready as much as be a significant distinction maker in coach Matt Eberflus’ protection.

But after present process a regime change final winter, the Bears’ new entrance workplace evaluators and coaches could wish to get an extended have a look at Smith on the sphere, gauging his match and manufacturing throughout the new scheme earlier than furthering conversations on how his long-term value to the group must be set.

At the homeowners conferences in March, new Bears common supervisor Ryan Poles was requested about his efforts to get an extension for Smith found out earlier than the common season started.

“If he’s the guy that I think he is, that’s something we have to address,” Poles stated. “I think he’s a really good linebacker and in this defense with Matt and (defensive coordinator) Alan (Williams), there’s a good chance he’s going to have a really good year. … Obviously the earlier you get to that (extension), the better. But also with a new staff, we may wait a little bit.”

Smith was the Bears’ high total draft choose in 2018, chosen No. 8 total by then-GM Ryan Pace. Without a signed contract in the summertime of his rookie season, Smith held out of coaching camp for 29 days and missed 15 practices. Upon returning to the sphere that August, he suffered a hamstring harm throughout his first week training and wanted a number of weeks to return to full power. (As the Bears eased him again into motion, he didn’t begin the season opener in opposition to the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field.)

Smith’s present contract has a base wage of $9.375 million for 2022, in accordance with, as a part of the fifth-year choice the Bears exercised greater than a 12 months in the past. His present deal is ready to run out subsequent March, at which level he would develop into an unrestricted free agent if an extension nonetheless hadn’t materialized. Smith has expressed his curiosity in persevering with his profession with the Bears.

The marketplace for top-tier linebackers has shot up just lately. Last August, Indianapolis Colts star Darius Leonard signed a five-year, $98.5 million extension that included $33 million assured. A number of weeks earlier, Fred Warner of the San Francisco 49ers signed a five-year, $95.3 million extension with $40.5 million assured.

Those offers seemingly present a ballpark for what Smith may very well be in search of as he seems to proceed his profession with the Bears. But as of this spring, the fifth-year linebacker was nonetheless with out agent illustration, one other complicating think about contract talks.

The Bears will report back to coaching camp as a full group Tuesday with the primary observe scheduled for 10 a.m. Wednesday. Poles and Eberflus are scheduled to talk with media members Tuesday morning.


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