Bears free agency tracker

Kyle Fuller Bears

Spending big in free agency doesn’t necessarily translate to winning big on the field, but for a team with as many holes as the Chicago Bears, it provides hope for better days ahead.

The Bears active off-season continued Friday when the club matched Green Bay’s offer to transition free agent corner back Kyle Fuller, thereby maintaining continuity in the secondary. Though the Bears were allowed up to five business days under NFL guidelines to decide what to do, they took mere hours to equal the Packers offer and later agreed to a four-year deal with Fuller worth $18 million in guaranteed money.

Fuller’s situation was one of the key headlines during the offseason and credit must be given to Chicago General Manager Ryan Pace for keeping one of the Bears top defenders. Along with the re-signing earlier this week of fellow corner Prince Amukamara, Chicago returns its starting corners that turned in surprisingly solid 2017 seasons.

Fuller’s uneven career took a positive step last year when he remained healthy and demonstrated the ball skills and instincts he displayed during his rookie year in 2014.  The Bears are betting that he is still an ascending player entering the prime of his career who will become of the lynchpins in defensive coordinator Vic Fangio’s scheme.  Based on his college scouting report, Chicago hopes to see more of this kind of player (courtesy, The Slant…NFL Draft Report)…“Physical demeanor with good length. Excellent toughness and energy – plays like he’s 25 pounds thicker. Good vertical leap and smooth hip action to flip-and-go. Fine instincts, anticipation and route recognition. Zone aware with good eyes, ball reactions and hands to intercept. Outstanding leaping ability. Willing run supporter. Closes in a flash with a fierce attitude. Heady and opportunistic player. Very good ball awareness and NFL ball skills. Good blitzer. Has special-teamsexperience, including as a gunner and jammer. Tough and experienced. Logged 42 career starts. Team captain who prepares like a pro.”

His signing capped a busy week that saw Chicago retool a moribund offense with the additions of wide receivers Allen Robinson and Taylor Gabriel as well as tight end Trey Burton and placekicker Cody Parkey. The Bears also brought in two of head coach Matt Nagy’s former Kansas City backup quarterbacks in Chase Daniels and Tyler Bray.  On defense, former San Francisco outside linebacker Aaron Lynch.

While games won’t be won on the field until the fall, the Bears improved their talent level and provided second-year quarterback Mitch Trubisky with tools to make his job easier.

Bears Bits: Scouting Lynch, Chicago’s new pass rusher (courtesy of The Slant…NFL Draft Guide based on college scouting reports ):  “Lynch possesses many of the requisites NFL clubs are looking for. Outstanding size, athletic ability, and body length. Flashes some playmaking ability. Deceptive strength to leverage the edge. Has a giant wingspan and can corral ballcarriers. Lynch explodes off the ball with an impressive first step, exhibits powerful hands to clear a path and closes with elite burst. At 6-6 and just under 250 pounds (was once around 260 while at Notre Dame), Lynch has room to add mass without losing a step, and offers the versatility of lining up at either end, or even along the interior on passing downs. When his switch is flipped, Lynch appears almost unblockable. Motor runs hot and cold. Spent most of 2013 season in a funk, and didn’t resemble the player he appeared to be at Notre Dame. Questionable effort and desire. Leaves production on the field. Does not play with passion and lacks urgency. Goes through the motions. Is not a strong or creative rusher and does not create plays. Lacks concentration and focus”….The Bears re-signed punter Pat O’Donnell.

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