Chicago Bears sign DE Ray McDonald

McDonald was cut by the 49ers mid-season last year, even though he was Pro Football Focus’ 12th ranked 3-4 defensive end through 14 games. There’s a reason for that as McDonald was accused of violence against women twice in a 6 or so month span. However, the charges never stuck either time and he’s now suing his accuser, which suggests he’s not trying to hide from anything that happened. That alone doesn’t prove he didn’t do anything, but it’s never been proven that he did anything either.

With that in mind, I like this deal. It’s very low risk outside of possible PR concerns. McDonald’s base salary is the veteran’s minimum and he can make maximum 1.5 million, a steep decline from the 4.9 million he would have made in 2015 if not for the accusations. On the field, McDonald is worth much closer to 4.9 million than 1.5 million. He’s going into his age 31 season, but he’s been an every down starter for the 49ers over the past 4 seasons and he’s graded out above average in his last 5 seasons. In Chicago, he reunites with Vic Fangio, his defensive coordinator in San Francisco and fills a significant need at 3-4 defensive end. This was a good move by the Bears.

Grade: A-

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