The Chicago Bears and quarterback Andy Dalton have agreed to a one-year, $10 million deal, with the chance for the quarterback to earn another $3 million in incentives, sources tell ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Chicago made “a very aggressive pursuit” of Seahawks QB Russell Wilson, sources said, but the Bears were told that Seattle is not trading him at this time.
The Bears were one of four teams Wilson’s agent named as a place of interest.
Dalton, 33, spent 2020 with the Dallas Cowboys after a nine-year run as the Cincinnati Bengals’ starter.
Signed as the backup, Dalton was pressed into duty when Cowboys starter Dak Prescott suffered a dislocated and compound fracture of his right ankle in Week 5 against the New York Giants.
In nine starts (11 appearances), Dalton had a 4-5 record, throwing for 2,170 yards and 14 touchdowns, with 8 interceptions. He had his best showing in a Week 16 win against the Philadelphia Eagles, throwing for 377 yards and three scores.
Dalton had some health issues of his own during the season, missing a game after suffering a concussion against the Washington Football Team. The following week, he was put on the reserve/COVID-19 list.
At the end of the season, Dalton said his hope was to find a spot as a starter and coach Mike McCarthy and offensive coordinator Kellen Moore said he had shown enough to warrant consideration from teams.
He has that chance in Chicago. Though the Bears made the postseason with an 8-8 mark, the team got uninspired play at quarterback as both Nick Foles and Mitchell Trubisky were given opportunities to start.
Trubisky is now a free agent after Chicago elected not to pick up his fifth-year option on the former No. 2 overall pick ahead of last season. Foles is still on the team’s roster.
After the Bengals selected Joe Burrow with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL draft, Dalton became expendable and was released by Cincinnati. He posted a 74-66-2 record as the Bengals starter, taking the franchise to the playoffs five times but not winning a postseason game. He was also named to the Pro Bowl three times.
ESPN’s Todd Archer contributed to this report.