11:45am: The Bears have officially confirmed the deal, announcing (via Twitter) that they’ve waived tight end Blake Annen to make room for Lee on their roster.
10:59am: The Texans and Bears have agreed to a trade, according to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle, who reports (via Twitter) that Houston has sent tight Khari Lee to Chicago. In exchange for Lee, the Texans will receive a 2017 sixth-round draft pick, per McClain.
Lee, 23, was one of 16 undrafted free agents to sign with the Texans right after the draft concluded in May, and the Bowie State product has been one of the more impressive players from that group. The rookie tight end has caught at least one pass in each of Houston’s three preseason games, with five receptions for 71 yards in total.
According to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (Twitter links), the Bears are excited about Lee, since the club likes his ability as an in-line blocker and the fact that he’s a solid red zone receiver. Wilson adds that the two sides worked out the trade last night, following the cutdown to 75 players.
While Lee isn’t a lock to make the Bears’ 53-man roster, the fact that the team was willing to surrender a sixth-round pick for him suggests he’s in the plans. As such, one or two of Chicago’s other tight ends may be in danger of losing their roster spots. Besides Martellus Bennett, the Bears are also carrying veterans Dante Rosario, Bear Pascoe, and Zach Miller.