Bears Quiet on Opening Day of NFL Free Agency

The Chicago Bears didn’t pull the trigger on any moves on Tuesday (unless you count the team making the Brandon Marshall trade official as the new NFL league year got underway), but the team certainly laid the groundwork for some moves as they met with several players.

The first and biggest name on that list of potential Bears was safety Antrel Rolle, who is one of the most sought-after players at his position in this year’s crop of free agents. Rolle reportedly met with the Bears on Tuesday to discuss a potential contract, and there are reports that the Bears have the highest offer currently on the table for his services.

Rolle has started all 80 games in his five-year stint with the New York Giants, racking up 14 interceptions, 381 tackles, and five forced fumbles over that span. His age could be a concern as he is 32 years old, but his skill and intelligence would be a big boost on the back end for the Bears if he indeed signs with them.

Another player that reportedly met with the Bears on Tuesday is wide receiver Eddie Royal. The Bears are in the market for another wide receiver with Marshall being traded to the New York Jets, and Royal could be a cheap alternative that could provide a nice secondary weapon behind Alshon Jeffery and Matt Forte in the passing game. In 16 games with the San Diego Chargers last season, Royal had 62 catches for 778 yards and seven touchdowns, and he was one of Phillip Rivers’ favorite targets.

Finally, the Bears are reportedly still in the running to land the services of nose tackle Terrance Knighton.The former Denver Bronco reportedly told the Broncos and Oakland Raiders that they were out of the running on Tuesday, meaning that the Bears are still in contention along with Washington and Indianapolis. With an aging Jeremiah Ratliff and an inexperienced Ego Ferguson as the team’s current options at nose tackle in Vic Fangio’s 3-4 defense, Knighton would be a huge asset on a defensive line that was one of the worst in the NFL last season.

The Bears did lose one player from their 2014 roster on Tuesday, as Washington officially signed defensive tackle Stephen Paea to a four-year contract.

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