NFL Rumors: Dak Prescott standstill, Vikings-Justin Jefferson bad news, Justin Fields timeline

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NFL Rumors: Justin Fields trade timeline revealed by insider

Despite Justin Fields outright stating that he wants to continue being a part of the Chicago Bears, it feels almost like a formality that the organization plans to trade him this offseason, utilize the No. 1 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft to select Caleb Williams from USC (or Drake Maye from North Carolina), and hit the hard reset button on the quarterback position for the future.

However, there are three big questions about a likely Fields trade. First, we don't know which team will trade for the quarterback, though teams like the Atlanta Falcons, Denver Broncos, and Las Vegas Raiders, among others, have been mentioned as possibilities. Secondly, we don't know what the Bears would get in return with reports varying from a late first-round pick to a second-round selection. Finally and most crucially, though, we don't know when the trade will happen.

In the case of that last part, though, we now have a bit more clarity.

SI and MMQB insider Albert Breer appeared with David Kaplan on ESPN 1000 in Chicago and addressed the likely timeline for the Bears trading Fields, reporting that it could happen much sooner than some might expect, as early as next week, per Pro Football Network.

"I think the bones of the trade will be set next week … There’s some urgency on the Bears’ part to get something done."

The urgency on the part of the Bears in getting this trade done makes sense with free agency looming large and set to begin the second week of March. Dealing Fields would allow Chicago to understand fully the draft capital they have to build the roster with and, just as crucially, give the team more of a blank slate to operate with in free agency as they figure to be big spenders.

Again, there is still a lot more to be decided with a Fields trade. But it does appear that things could progress extremely quickly and that we'll have much more clarity in the near future.