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This Bears rebuild is going to be very painful

USA TODAY SPORTS logo USA TODAY SPORTS 3/6/2015

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What does the Brandon Marshall trade mean for both the Bears and Jets? We break it down.

The Bears get worse and are just getting started

With the trade of wide receiver Brandon Marshall, it’s official: The Chicago Bears are in the early stages of a massive rebuild.

The Bears sent Marshall to the Jets for only a fifth-round pick and $3.9 million in cap savings for 2015. It’s an underwhelming package for a top-10 receiver and signals a shift in direction for the organization.

Chicago will have about $36 million in cap space after the trade is made official, according to Spotrac, but do not expect the Bears to be big spenders when free agency gets under way. There’s no point of spending big money and wasting a year of a player’s prime when it’s in the team’s best interest to be as bad as possible.

The 2015 season will be seen as a lost one before Fox and his coaching staff can start molding the roster to its liking. The Bears have 17 players headed for free agency this offseason, none of which are high priority re-signings.

Expect yet another mass exodus next offseason. Matt Forte will be 31 and without a contract. Alshon Jeffery will be a hot free agent. And free agency bust Jared Allen will likely end up a cap casualty.

The player the front office may be most anxious to purge will stick around.

Chicago is likely stuck with high-priced QB Jay Cutler for at least two more seasons, unless it can find a trade partner willing to take on a $15.5 million cap number this season. If the Bears can’t unload Cutler by March 12, $10 million of his 2016 base salary becomes fully guaranteed, per Spotrac.

But with all of the cap room the Bears will have next offseason — they have only $85.1 million committed to the 2016 roster — they could be willing to eat that $10 million in order to save nearly $6 million in cap space and officially get the rebuild underway.

The Bears will be a terrible football team for at least the next two seasons. But with the No. 7 pick in the 2015, what should be another high pick next season and a ton of cap space, Chicago will not be down for long if new general manager Ryan Pace makes the right moves.

The Jets get better and are just getting started

The Jets can cross “Find a No. 1 receiver” off their offseason to-do list.

Marshall will cost New York $7.7 million against the cap. That’s the 18th highest cap hit for receiver in the league — a good value for a top-10 receiver when healthy.

Percy Harvin is expendable after the Jets picked up Brandon Marshall. (Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports) © Provided by USA Today Sports Percy Harvin is expendable after the Jets picked up Brandon Marshall. (Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports)

With Marshall and Eric Decker on the outside and the underrated Jeremy Kerley in the slot, Percy Harvin is the odd man out. And none of Harvin’s $10.5 million salary is guaranteed, so the Jets can let him go without any cost.

Essentially, the Jets turned a fifth-round pick and Percy Harvin into Brandon Marshall and $2.8 million in cap space.

MIKE FOSS:Jets trade is useless unless they find a new QB

That brings the Jets up to around $46 million in cap room to fill out the roster, per Spotrac. They could use an edge rusher, some help on the offensive line and any defensive back they can get their hands on.

With free agents like DE Jerry Hughes, CB Antonio Cromartie and OT Bryan Bulaga available, New York can address those needs.

The Jets also hold the sixth overall pick in a deep draft. If they can pick up impact free agents, a trade back for more picks could be the move. New York can drop back a few spots and still pick up Michigan State CB Trae Waynes or Iowa OT Brandon Scherff.

If new coach Todd Bowles can cobble together a top-10 defense, it could make up for having a question mark at the quarterback position. With the level of talent the Jets could have, quarterback Geno Smith will only be asked not to screw everything up.

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