The Chicago Bears and GM Phil Emery no doubt feel they got a great deal when they traded two third-round picks to the Miami Dolphins in exchange for pro bowl wide receiver Brandon Marshall, but there is another potential layer to this story that suggests it could have been an even better deal for the Bears. Izzy Gould of the South Florida Sentiel has reported that when Dolphins team owner Steve Ross reached out upset fans on Thursday night, he suggested that Brandon Marshall would have been released if the Bears hadn't stepped up with their offer.
The information comes through a quote from one of the protesting fans, long-time season ticket holder Jason Lawrence, who spoke with Mr. Ross via conference call and then sat down for an interview with Gould:
"[Ross] said they had been shopping [Marhsall] for a couple weeks," Lawrence said. "Nobody would return their phone calls about getting him. If Chicago didn't take [Marshall] ... they would have ended up cutting him very shortly after that, and got nothing."
After the two teams consummated the trade last week, news emerged that Marshall had been accused of punching a 24-year old woman in the face outside a New York nightclub, and even though both the Bears and Dolphins claimed to know about the incident before the trade was made, this after-the-fact talk from Ross about potentially releasing the troubled wide receiver to protect "team morale" suggests the Dolphins may have had a better grasp on the issue.
Ultimately the Bears still got a good deal if Marshall performs anywhere near the levels he has over the last few seasons, and they got a great deal if he can recapture the magic he and Jay Cutler shared back in Denver. Even so, it's interesting to consider the possibility that they could have kept both third-round picks while still getting Marshall in a Bears uniform.
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