Jimmy Graham Rumors: Bears Gave TE No-Trade Clause in Free-Agent Contract

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMarch 23, 2020

Green Bay Packers' Jimmy Graham celebrates his touchdown catch during the second half of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders Sunday, Oct. 20, 2019, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps)
Jeffrey Phelps/Associated Press

Chicago Bears tight end Jimmy Graham reportedly won't be traded during the next two years unless he gives his blessing.

According to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network, the Bears included a no-trade clause in the deal Graham signed with the NFC North team this offseason.

ESPN's Field Yates called it "rare" in today's game while breaking down the contract that will pay the University of Miami product $16 million over two years with $9 million guaranteed. It is a head-turning stipulation, especially since he looked nowhere near his prime during his time in Green Bay.

Graham, a five-time Pro Bowler, was one of the best tight ends in recent history while with the New Orleans Saints.

He was a matchup nightmare who was too quick for most linebackers and too big and physical for most defensive backs. As a result, he surpassed 1,200 receiving yards twice and reached double-digit touchdown catches four times in his career.

However, he finished the 2019 campaign with 38 catches for 447 yards and three touchdowns as a member of the Packers. He also had just two touchdowns in 2018.

Those are not the numbers of someone many teams are going to seek in a trade, especially since Graham turns 34 years old during the 2020 season. If he does play better and fits Chicago's offense, the team likely won't look to trade him, either, because it will need him for the playoff race.

"And with a $10 million cap hit in 2021, it's unlikely they could trade him next offseason even if he does play well," Adam Hoge of NBC Sports Chicago wrote. "The no-trade clause just seems like a throw-in that doesn't really matter."

It makes for a notable headline, but Graham's no-trade clause likely won't be a major talking point once the season starts.

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