Bears’ Justin Fields Decision Will Have Lasting Impact On Betting

Written By Cole Rush on February 29, 2024 - Last Updated on March 6, 2024
Will the Bears keep Justin Fields or draft Caleb Williams?

Da Bears are down in Da Dumps. The team’s dismal showing last season left many wondering whether quarterback Justin Fields has what it takes to lead the Chicago Bears to another title.

Meanwhile, Chicago has a chance to snag a once-in-a-generation prospect at QB in Caleb Williams.

Will the Bears use their first overall pick in the NFL Draft to take an unproven yet highly talented Williams, or will the team use two top-10 picks to build a better team around Fields?

Where do the Bears stand ahead of the NFL Draft?

Since Illinois sports betting launched in 2019, more than $25 billion has been wagered. Much of that action has undoubtingly been on the Chicago Bears. Over the last few seasons, bets in favor of the Bears have rarely worked out. The question is, are the Bears destined to continue losing, or are they one critical piece away from competing for another championship?

Last March, the Chicago Bears snagged Carolina’s first-round pick and receiver DJ Moore (plus a few other draft picks). Carolina received Chicago’s first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft and selected standout Alabama quarterback Bryce Young. After Carolina’s worst-in-the-league record in 2023, Chicago’s pick from Carolina will be the first overall pick in 2024.

That puts Chicago under the microscope as the NFL Draft approaches. The draft is April 25 to 27 in Detroit.

The Bears have struggled to find a franchise quarterback for, well, forever. For years, the six-word narrative of the Bears has been: “Draft quarterback. Have hope. Lose. Repeat.” The Bears appear staged to repeat that cycle, but can they flip the fifth word to “win?”

Does Fields simply need another season under his belt to lead the Bears to a championship in the near future, or is it time for Chicago to cut its losses and draft what some say is the best QB prospect in decades?

Current consensus has Bears taking Williams with first pick

Fields joined the Bears during the 2021 season. He’s been the subject of much contemplation among the fandom. Can he up his passing game? Is his decision-making NFL quality? Is he the QB the Bears need to win another title?

After three seasons, Bears fans seem to have made up their minds. The group that thinks the Bears should stick with Fields is being overshadowed by those who want the team to take a chance on Williams. They say missing out on Williams would be the worst mistake the Bears have made since trading for quarterback Jay Cutler.

Right now, the signs are pointing to Williams becoming a Bear in April. NFL insider Adam Schefter thinks the Bears might draft Williams and keep Fields.

Other evidence, however, suggests Fields and the Bears are on the outs. For example, Fields no longer follows the Bears on Instagram. But it’s unlikely that it’s a significant sign of the team’s draft intentions.

Sportsbooks are leaning toward the Bears keeping their top pick and choosing Williams with it. Some have speculated that the Bears will keep Fields and trade the first pick to gain more draft picks.

Some rumors have Fields being traded to Pittsburgh. These have not been substantiated, but the possibility of the Bears giving up Fields in an effort to enhance other positions (receivers and tight ends, in my opinion) is high.

The odds and how they could change

Some sportsbooks currently list the Bears’ odds of winning the Super Bowl at around +3000. It’s far from a guarantee, but it’s also a far cry from the odds seen over the past few years. Should Williams join the team, there’s a chance the odds could be more favorable.

Though, he is still unproven in the NFL.

Illinois allows NFL Draft betting, so bettors can wager on which player will be the first selection and which team will make that selection. Williams is the odds-on favorite at -1000, according to DraftKings.

The only question is, will Williams be a Chicago Bear?

Photo by Associated Press/Melissa Tamez
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Cole Rush

Cole Rush writes words. A lot of them. Most of those words can be found in gambling publications such as PlayIllinois, iGaming Business, Gaming Today,,, ICE 365, and IGB North America. Cole also covers pop culture and books for and Cole has more than eight years of experience writing about gambling and entertainment.

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