Chicago Bears: 5 defensive free agents worth signing by training camp

Chicago Bears - Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports
Chicago Bears - Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports /
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Chicago Bears, Kawann Short
Chicago Bears – Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports /

Chicago Bears Free Agent Option: Kawann Short, DT

If you want a player who has the ability to actually fill in for Eddie Goldman, then Kawann Short is that guy. Short has been one of the better defensive tackles in the game for years. That is until he started having some injury issues the last couple of seasons.

I would definitely hope to see him come back in 2021 and the Chicago Bears should be highly interested in his services. He is easily the best defensive lineman available in free agency when healthy and might even be considered an upgrade over Goldman.

Short has played his entire career in Carolina. He has two Pro Bowl seasons (2015 and 2018). Unfortunately, he has only played in five games over the last two seasons and will be 32 during the 2021 campaign. Should he pass a physical with his injury concerns, Short would be on my list of must-sign players should Goldman decide not to play in 2021. He might even have to sign for near the veteran minimum at this point too — a bonus for a cash-strapped Chicago Bears team.

When healthy, Short is a force not only versus the run but also versus the pass. He has averaged five sacks per season throughout his career if you look past the last two seasons where he hardly played. He also has averaged 45 combined tackles over that same span. To not give him a shot to prove himself healthy would be a mistake in my opinion.