The Chicago Bears and Julius Peppers have finalized a deal that will bring the athletic defensive end to Chicago at a hefty price, ESPN reported Friday afternoon.
The exact terms of the deal are unknown, but Peppers is expected to earn around $13 million during the first three years with the Bears.
The five-time Pro Bowler provides the Bears’ aging defense with a huge lift. Chicago struggled against the pass last season, primarily due to the lack of consistent pass rush and a rash of injuries in the secondary.
Peppers has the ability to be one of the NFL’s most dominant players–when he is motivated. It will be interesting to see if he takes plays off now that he has the long-term deal he has wanted for years.
Bears sign Chester Taylor
The Bears signed longtime Vikings running back Chester Taylor to a four-year deal worth $12 million dollars, bolstering what was an anemic ground-game in 2009.
Taylor rushed for just 338 yards last season with the Vikings, but rushed for over 1,200 yards in his lone season as a starter prior to Adrian Peterson’s arrival in Minnesota. Although he is probably on the downside of his career and has battled injuries, Taylor should have plenty of the tank after playing as a reserve for the last two and a half seasons.
Taylor’s arrival puts pressure on Matt Forte, who lacked explosiveness last season after a sensational rookie season in 2008. Forte has had some knee issues but is expected to be healthy by the start of training camp.
More free agent reaction coming soon here on ToTheTin.