4-time Pro Bowl DT Jay Ratliff, who was recently released by the Dallas Cowboys, has been medically cleared to play this season. It was rumored the Cowboys released Ratliff due to injury issues, but that appears not to be the case. The other rumor is that Ratliff was a problem in the locker room and a constant thorn in the coaching staff’s side. This rumor has a bit more legs after Ratliff’s clean bill of health, but hey nobody is perfect.
Who cares, you ask? The Bears are down to off-the-street DT Landon Cohen and an undrafted rookie from Montana St (Zach Minter) as their back-up DTs. Right now the Bears are starting a converted DE in Corey Wooten (who’s actually doing a heck of a job) and oft-injured Stephen Paea who could be back on the injured list the next time someone steps on his big toe (turf toe). The point is, the Bears desperately need help at DT and a DT that has made 4 of the last 5 Pro Bowls is available.
I know many fans think the Bears season is lost, and it might be, but with a winning record (4-3) it is too early to give up and start playing for draft picks. If the Bears are going to make a legitimate attempt at winning games this season then the defensive line is the first place they should try to improve. While maybe QB first, but that is a whole different article. Pro Bowl DTs don’t hit the waiver wire often and if the Bears are serious about winning this season they need to do whatever it takes to add Ratliff.