Chicago Bears Free Agent Options: D-Line

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Starter Upside:

DE Tyrunn Walker – 24, Saints (6’3 | 294) – RFA: One of new Bears GM Ryan Pace’s better finds in the undrafted free agent market. Walker was the Saints 3-tech on passing downs last season and did a good job generating pressure on the QB and holding up against the run. Walker is an impressive athlete who ran a 4.9 40 at 298 pounds and had 8.5 sacks as a senior at Tulsa despite playing the 5-tech position which is primarily a run stopping role. His versatility to play either the 3 or 5-tech and Pace’s familiarity with Walker could make him a priority target for the Bears. Walker is a restricted free agent, but the Saints are tight against the salary cap so I doubt they would match even a decent offer from the Bears. At ony 24 years old, Walker has the potential to develop into a key rotation piece on the Bears defensive line and shouldn’t cost more than a couple million per season.

DT Alex Carrington – 27, Rams (6’5 | 285): Was one of the best young D-lineman in the league in 2012, but missed most of 2013 with a quad injury and didn’t look like the same player early in 2014. Carrington was starting to round into his 2012 shape mid-year when a series of injuries (quad, knee, thigh) ended his season after week 10. He is two years removed from playing at a dominant level, but he was an effective pass rusher out of both the 3-tech and 5-tech positions with the Bills in 2012 and the Bears could really use depth at both those spots. Carrington’s experience as a 5-tech would be especially valuable for the Bears in their transition to Fangio’s scheme. He also blocked 4 field goals in 2012 to earn the nickname “Megahand”.

DE Da’Quan Bowers – 24, Bucs (6’3 | 280): Has been a major bust for the Bucs after being a mid-2nd round pick in 2011, but has the size, power and athleticism to be a prototype 3-tech. Bowers had another disappointing season for the Bucs, which included a 2 game suspension for performance enhancing drugs, and Tampa is reportedly giving up on him. On the bright side, Bowers played one of the best games of his young career in week 17 and you never know when the light bulb is going to go on for a young player. It’s a low risk move for the Bears with the type of upside that could speed up the rebuilding process. Bowers has the ability to be a prototype 3-tech in Fangio’s scheme.

DE Tony Jerod-Eddie – 24, 49ers (6’5 | 301) – EFA: Was Justin Smith’s backup last year with the Niners, so he has familiarity with Fangio’s scheme and got a few starts last year so has some experience. TJE has the size, speed, and athelticism to be a factor as a 5-tech, but was very inconsistent when given a chance to play last season. He dominated in flashes, but disappeared more often. He’s only 24 and will probably be given a qualifying offer by the Niners, but if not his potential, low price tag, and familiarity with the scheme could make him a player of interest for the Bears.


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DT Karl Klug – 26, Titans (6’3 | 275): The former running back still has a good first step off the line of scrimmage and is a solid all around player who always gives max effort. Klug is somewhat limited physically and is best used a rotational player at the 3 and 5-tech positions. He has good football instincts and can be effective if used in short bursts.

DE C.J. Wilson – 27, Raiders (6’3 | 290): Spent last season in Oakland as a 4-3 DT, but played in Green Bay the first four years of his career as a rotation 5-tech in the Packers 3-4 scheme. Wilson started 13 games for the Pack during his 4 years there and was an effective backup. He’s only 27 so should still have some good football left and could provide valuable depth at the 5-tech position.