If I was the GM of the Chicago Bears, here would be my off-season moves and why:
Release or trade Cutler, Tracy Porter, Ego Ferguson, Eddie Royal, David Cobb, Bobby Massie, McManis, Mitch Unrein
Cap space: 88.2 million (worst case scenario if all of the above are cut and no trades)
All current and market rate information is provided by spotrac.com
3 M QB Brian Hoyer (one year deal)
3 M QB Matt Barkley (two-year deal)
Free Agents:(all slightly overestimates to their market value average yearly salaries)
19 M Offensive Tackles Khalil & Wagner (one year deal for Khalil)
10 M Defensive End Calais Campbell (three year deal)
9 M Wide Receiver Terrelle Pryor (three year deal)
5 M Safety John Cyprian (three year deal)
2.5 M Third-Down Back Andre Ellington (two-year deal)
2 M Wide Receiver Anquan Boldin (he can actually still play and mentor young guys one year)
1 M Robbie Gould (were already paying him why not bring him back)
54.5 M Signings
33.7 million CAP Space for rookies and other signings
Round 1: Mitch Trubisky QB North Carolina
Round 2: A Cornerback. With all the talented cornerbacks in this draft, inadvertently one will slide right into the hands of the Bears.
Round 3: Antonio Garcia OT Troy
Round 4: Jake Butt TE Michigan
Round 4: Chris Godwin WR Penn State
The released players are either overpaid or injury prone. I would invest heavily in the offensive line and considering current players, this would give the Bears one of the top offensive lines in the NFL. The Bears running game was decent last year with Jordan Howard, and would only get better. This would help out a young quarterback tremendously as well as the defense. Similar formula to the Cowboys last year, and the Seattle Seahawks a few years ago.
The wide receiver free agent class is not great. Pryor comes with very little baggage and no injuries. Plus he wants to play football evidenced by his position switch. If Kevin White can get healthy and Meredith continually progresses, this would be a very decent group.
The defense. The Bears should go after a top defensive end that is solid in the run game and can put pressure on the quarterback. Health permitting, this would be arguably the top front seven in football. This group could stop the run and hit the quarterback. Including Cyprian and a value CB in the draft, would improve an already promising secondary.
Quarterback. The Bears will inevitably take a quarterback in this draft. I personally would not but I tried to be at least a little realistic on that one. I honestly would trade down this year and stockpile picks for next year because the group seems much better, and not go after a defensive end in free agency and draft one in the 10 spot (give or take) but I know that's not realistic. At this point, Mitch Trubisky looks like the best option. Accuracy is key and if he can continue to improve he can be a middle of the pack starter. Signing Hoyer is insurance and Barkley could become a functional backup. I would wait to the rookie is ready and not throw him into the mix.
Other draft picks. Drafting an OT and trying to develop him would save on future salary-cap issues. If he does not pan out at OT, the Bears could always try him out at guard. Josh Sitton will be 31 this summer and comes with a heavy price tag. Throwing a rookie into the mix and developing him one way or the other seems like a no-brainer. Drafting more WRs would also be smart. They can work with the new quarterback and developed together. Drafting a tight end is an insurance policy for the Bears because Zach Miller cannot stay healthy.