Bears Nearing Deal With D.J. Williams

The Bears appear to be on the verge of finalizing a new deal with linebacker D.J. Williams, a source familiar with the negotiations told Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune. The 11th-year veteran would immediately become the frontrunner to start at middle linebacker next season if he inks a deal deal, though he would face competition from Jon Bostic for the No. 1 slot.

Williams joined the Bears during free agency in 2013 on a one-year deal with a $900K base. Unfortunately, injuries got in his way – first in the preseason by a calf injury and then a season-ending pectoral injury that he suffered in the Bears’ sixth game last fall. In six starts last season, Williams recorded 39 tackles, including 3.5 sacks and 4.5 tackles for a loss. At the end of the season, the 31-year-old linebacker said his intent was to remain in Chicago in 2014, citing familiarity with defensive coordinator Mel Tucker.

Bears general manager Phil Emery recently offered up positive words about what he saw from the University of Miami product. “I saw a good football player. Saw a guy who has legitimately very good burst. Saw a player who has good instincts, gets around the ball and plays with a relentless style. We were not displeased with his effort. We were very pleased with where he was going and how he was progressing,” said the GM.

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