7:15pm: Williams got a $1.5MM with $100K of it guaranteed, tweets Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun. He also gets a roster bonus of ~$23K per game.
4:01pm: The Bears and linebacker D.J. Williams have reached agreement on a one-year deal, tweets Mike Garafolo of FOX Sports. The 11th-year veteran will immediately become the frontrunner to start at middle linebacker next season but he’ll 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.