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Bears Busy During First Weekend Of FA

Julius Peppers will show his strength in Chicago

The Chicago Bears ended the opening weekend of the free agency signing period with the biggest name, and the biggest paycheck, to the sum of 91.5 million dollars over 6 years, to now former Carolina Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers.

They also inked NFC North rival running back Chester Taylor from the Minnesota Vikings to a four year deal, ensuring that he will face his former team twice a year.

Another signing that flew under the radar so to speak was former St. Louis Ram, and most recently San Diego Charger Tight End Brandon Manumaleuna, one of the best blocking tight ends in football.

My only concern with this signing is that it leaves some questions as to what role Greg Olsen will play, and my worst fear, is there any role for him at all? In my mind I think Olsen is one of the better pass catching tight ends in the league. He did not have the year that a lot of Bears fans thought that he would, but after watching tapes, he made some very keys receptions that absolutely helped the Bears come away with a win. It would be a big mistake for Martz, and Smith to let him leave town to be a stud somewhere else.

I do like the signing though, the Bears needed to add a blocking tight end due to Desmond Clark's decline in the last two years, and it was smart to get someone who has knowledge of the system.

I do feel that they paid way to much for Peppers, but I understand why they did. The other teams that were in the running were the Washington Redskins, and the Dallas Cowboys, both notorious big spenders, so if they wanted Peppers they had to put up more that anyone was willing to offer.

Like I said, I understand it, but I hope they are not putting all their eggs into one basket. I feel that they could have gone with Green Bay Packers Defensive End Arron Kampman even though he is coming off of a bad year in which he hurt his knee. He would have helped them just as much, he also knows the NFC North grind, he has knowledge of the two teams in the division that stand in the Bears way, and still would have left plenty of room to fill in other voids, such as free safety, Ryan Clark from the Steelers would have been my first pick there. He is a big hitter, with what I call a "Bear swagger". He would have been the best free safety here since Mike Brown, but better.
Overall I am happy that the Bears came out "guns a blazing" and got what they wanted, or I should say, what they needed. They got Mike Martz his Marshall Faulk back. They got one of the best blocking tight ends in the game, and in case you didn't think about it, six players out of the Bears front seven on defense that are projected starters for the 2010 season, are Pro Bowlers. I'll take that any day.


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