Nick Roach to Raiders Does Not Put Pressure on Bears to Sign Urlacher

Nick Roach is gone, turning to the dark side and leaving the Chicago Bears to become the starting middle linebacker for the Oakland Raiders.  He’s going to get somewhere in the neighborhood of $3-$4 million per year over a few years, though exact terms are not yet known.  Many Bears fans are expecting a counter-move by Phil Emery, re-signing Brian Urlacher. 

A lot of people think that Roach’s departure suddenly forces the Bears to bring back Urlacher.  While it’s certainly very possible that #54 returns to the Bears, it won’t be because of Nick Roach.  I am confident that the Bears have a price in mind for Brian Urlacher and won’t stray too far from their number.

As Phil Emery has told us after the Bears splurged on new toys for the offensive side of the ball, the Bears “are up against the cap” and will have to scrutinize each move very carefully.  Sean Jensen reports that the Bears are about $5.6 million under the cap as the dust settles following a couple additions and a few departures.  That’s not a ton of money when you consider the Bears need to save about $3 million for the rookie pool and usually save a few bucks of “rainy day money” in case they need to find an injury replacement or something pops up.

If Urlacher wants the $5 million, he’s not likely to get it from Chicago.  Maybe Minnesota gets back at the Bears for driving up the price on Phil Loadholt and entices him to sign a spite deal.

Other options to play linebacker for the Bears are not likely on the roster today.  Geno Hayes left via Free Agency leaving Blake Costanzo, Dom DiCicco and JT Thomas as the most notable names to play the linebacker spots, so the need is clear.  Whether the Bears look to Daryl Smith, who played for Mel Tucker in Jacksonville, or head to the draft is still unclear.

Make no mistake, Brian Urlacher will only be back if he wants to be and if the Bears can get him for their price.

What do you think Bears fans?  Does Nick Roach’s departure put pressure on the Bears to bring Urlacher back?  Do you think Urlacher will be back?

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  • Anthony T. Wilson

    Usually I agree with most everything you write…but this seems like a disaster in the making to me. I think Urlacher has played his card right and put an incredible amount of pressure on our team to resign him. Roach was versatile and could be placed in a variety of spots, and he excelled there… I believe the fans want Urlacher back and I think this MUST put some pressure on Emery to close the deal with him.

    • BearGogglesOn

      The pressure that you sense is a media creation. The Bears don’t have any pressure to bring Urlacher back. If Urlacher had played his cards right, he’d have a contract by now. In fact, I think the Bears have played their cards pretty well. Rather than responding to Urlacher’s proposal, they let him hit the open market and get a sense for his worth. No deal in hand yet, so now the Bears could get him at a much lower price.

  • John Mack

    I think Urlacher will be back, but the “process” of signing Urlacher along with offensive additions signals to me that the Bears are going to finally draft the heir apparent for the middle of the defense. From Minter to Olgetree to Reddick, and there will be plenty of talent available in the 2nd round as well. But ultimately, Urlacher comes back for a 2 year 3-4mil deal.

    • BearGogglesOn

      Make no mistake, the Bears will be drafting a LB or two in this draft.

  • ThompsonWay

    I like the Idea of bringing Smith and Urlacher in for 2013. This would be a upgrade. I know that this year is a tight cap year, but should open up a little next year.

    • BearGogglesOn

      Smith gets pretty high marks. His age and missing last season could put him in the bargain bin.