Former Eagles tight end Trey Burton is expected to sign with the Bears, a source tells Mike Garafolo of NFL.com (on Twitter). Burton will land a four-year, $32MM deal, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link).
This four-year agreement looks closer to a two-year deal, however. Albert Breer of SI.com reports (on Twitter) Burton’s contract contains $18MM fully guaranteed in the first two years. After that, nothing is guaranteed, making the 2020 and ’21 seasons look like option years for the Bears.
Burton will receive a $7.5MM signing bonus and a $1MM roster bonus due early next week, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports. His initial two base salaries are $2.8MM and $6.7MM, with the 2020 season also coming with a $6.7MM base. If he’s still on the roster in 2021, Burton will earn a $6MM base. Although Burton doesn’t have any fully guaranteed money due after 2019, there is a $4MM injury guarantee for part of his 2020 money, per Florio.
Burton provides new head coach Matt Nagy with a serious weapon in the offense. Between Burton and new free agent addition Allen Robinson, quarterback Mitch Trubisky couldn’t ask for much more. Lat season, Trubisky was forced to throw to one of the least-inspiring group of pass-catchers in the NFL, but he’ll now have a few legitimate targets.
Burton, of course, has been a backup for the majority of his career, as he’s played second fiddle to Zach Ertz in Philadelphia. Over the past two years, Burton has averaged 30 receptions, 288 yards, and three touchdowns per season, but he’s been extremely efficient. Football Outsiders ranked Burton third in DVOA among tight ends a season ago, meaning he provided value on a per-play basis.
Despite his relative lack of experience, Burton will now become the fifth-highest-paid tight end in the league on an annual basis. His $8MM/year salary will place behind only Travis Kelce, Jordan Reed, Rob Gronkowski, and Ertz. While Burton’s guarantees haven’t yet been made public, each of those tight ends received between $10-15MM in fully guaranteed cash.
Burton, whom PFR ranked as the best tight end on the market and the No. 19 overall free agent, drew plenty of interest before landing in Chicago, as both the 49ers and Lions expressed interest.
[RELATED: Bears Depth Chart]
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.