Bears Sign C Coleman Shelton

The Rams expressed interest in keeping Coleman Shelton, but their interior offensive line blueprint changed via two big-ticket guard contracts. As a result, Shelton will collect some cash elsewhere.

Shelton signed a one-year contract with the Bears on Thursday. While Chicago was a candidate — due to cap space and the likelihood of Caleb Williams’ rookie contract helping the cause — to splurge for a center. But Lloyd Cushenberry went to the Titans; the Raiders retained Andre James. While Connor Williams remains unsigned, the Bears will go with Shelton, who is going into his age-29 season.

A Rams backup until the Austin Corbett free agency defection opened a guard spot, Shelton worked as an interior starter in Los Angeles for most of the past two seasons. After opening last season as a guard, Shelton became the team’s full-time center last season. He beat out former starter Brian Allen for the gig. The former UDFA started all 18 games for the Rams last year, ranking as Pro Football Focus’ 17th-best center.

L.A.’s offseason blueprint hinged on guards, and the team joined the Panthers in spending big to fortify that position in a deep market. The Rams re-signed Kevin Dotson on a $16MM-per-year deal and inked Jonah Jackson on a three-year, $51MM pact. Although Shelton’s terms are not known, the Rams already have three veteran contracts — counting longtime right tackle Rob Havenstein‘s — on their starting O-line.

The Bears have struggled at center in recent years. Their plan to move Cody Whitehair back to center did not last, and PFF ranked Lucas Patrick 30th at the position. With the rest of Chicago’s O-line seemingly in place, the team will see about Shelton at center ahead of the draft.

View Comments (8)