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General manager Ryan Poles said Tuesday at the NFL Scouting Combine that if the Bears decide they will be selecting a quarterback with the No. 1 overall pick in April's draft, the team would attempt to trade Fields before the start of free agency March 13, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.

Poles' comments could be read as a response to Fields' recently stated desire for clarity on his future in Chicago, and it sounds like a decision could be made more quickly than expected. The official start of free agency is just over two weeks away, while the legal tampering period will begin March 11. If, as expected, the Bears determine they will be selectin a QB like Caleb Williams in the 2024 NFL Draft, trade options for Fields could include the Steelers, Falcons, Patriots, Raiders and Broncos. In 13 games last season, the 2021 first-round pick compiled 2,562 passing yards with 16 touchdowns and nine interceptions, to go with 657 rushing yards and four scores.

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