Buffalo Bills trading OL Ryan Bates to Chicago Bears for a 2024 5th-round pick

Buffalo Bills trading OL Ryan Bates to Chicago Bears for a 2024 5th-round pick

The Buffalo Bills are trading offensive lineman Ryan Bates to the Chicago Bears in exchange for a 2024 fifth-round pick, the team announced Monday.

Buffalo Bills trading OL Ryan Bates to Chicago Bears for a 2024 5th-round pick

The deal will become official when the league year begins on March 13, pending a physical.

Bates, 27, went undrafted in 2019 out of Penn State. He signed with the Philadelphia Eagles as an undrafted free agent before being traded to the Bills before the season began. He appeared in 73 games for the Bills, making 19 starts, 15 coming in the 2022 season. Bates signed a four-year, $17 million deal with the Bills ahead of the 2022 season.

Prior to making the jump to the NFL, Bates earned third-team All-Big Ten honors during both his sophomore and junior seasons in Happy Valley.

Bears beef up offensive line by acquiring Ryan Bates

The Bills now hold 10 picks in the 2024 NFL Draft, including the No. 28 overall selection. The Bears, meanwhile, pick up an experienced player who can serve as depth along their offensive line.

Just who Bates will be blocking for is the question, as Chicago holds the No. 1 overall selection, and all signs point to the team using the pick on a quarterback. That, of course, would mean trading Justin Fields, the 2021 first-round pick out of Ohio State.

USC’s Caleb Williams, viewed as the top quarterback on the board, told Pete Thamel of ESPN that he loves Michael Jordan and has been studying Walter Payton on YouTube, and would be “excited” to be drafted by the Bears.

“I’m 22. I didn’t really get to see those players,” Williams said. “As the saying goes, the legends live on. That’s my goal of playing football — it’s not money, it’s not fame … it’s to be immortal. I want to reach that sense of being a legend. Being at the table … and having a rightful seat through hard work and energy and time I’ve put into this game that we all love. It’s appealing to be in a city like that. With legends that you’ve looked up to … reach for the standard they set and try to do anything to get there.”

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