Chicago Bears Free Agent Options: Inside Linebacker

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports


Mason Foster – 25, Bucs (6’1 | 242): I was high on Foster coming out of college in 2011 due to his elite run stopping potential. He has good instincts, takes proper angles to the ball, rarely misses a tackle, and likes to hit. Injuries have hampered his production with the Bucs, but he didn’t miss a game in college so I’m confident it’s not an on-going issue. Foster’s versatility is another plus, he played all three 4-3 LB spots in college and would be a good fit for the ILB position in Fangio’s scheme. He played out of position in Tampe as a MLB, but has the athelticism, speed  and instincts to be a good fit for the Patrick Willis role in Fangio’s hybrid 3-4. Foster likely won’t carry a hefty price tag due to injuries and limited production, but the former 3rd round pick would give the Bears a potential starter at ILB next to Jon Bostic.

Bruce Carter – 26, Cowboys (6’2 | 240): Former 2nd round pick who had his best season as a rookie ILB back when the Cowboys ran a 3-4 scheme in 2012. Carter has the athleticism to handle the coverage responsibilities in Fangio’s scheme and the speed to be solid in run support as well. He’s struggled with OLB responsibilities in a 4-3 scheme but has untapped potential and could be an affordable option to pair with Jon Bostic in the middle of the Bears defense.