The Chicago Bears continued their trend of signing defensive players to one-year contracts this week, inking cornerback Alan Ball to a pact Friday morning.
Ball, who graduated from the University of Illinois and was drafted in the seventh round of the 2007 NFL Draft, has played for three different teams in his career, including the last two seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars. In those campaigns, Ball started 22 games, intercepting three passes and racking up 59 tackles. He missed the final nine games of last season with a biceps injury, but should be fully recovered to participate in Bears’ offseason workouts.
For the Bears, Ball represents another cornerback to potentially compete for a job with Kyle Fuller, Demontre Hurst, and Tim Jennings, among others. He also has some experience at the free safety position, but it’s unlikely he’ll play there after spending the last six seasons as a cornerback full-time.
He does have a bit of size, standing 6 feet, 2 inches and weighing in at 197 pounds, and the Bears have to hope that he can bring some physicality to the position that is lacking when guys like Jennings are on the field.