Derrick Martin

NFC Notes: Hester, Sproles, Graham, Bears

Devin Hester was one of many Falcons to reach the end zone last night, scoring on a record-setting punt return and a running play. However, it’s his role as a wide receiver that has him more happy with the Falcons than he was in his last few seasons with the Bears.

“I wasn’t happy the last three or four years in Chicago because things wasn’t going the way I expect,” Hester said yesterday, according to Adam Hoge of WGN Radio (Twitter link). “I would always have a great camp, have all the receivers saying and coaches saying I had the best camp of all the receivers. And once the season start off, I’m not there.”

As Ed Werder of tweets, there were a few teams eyeing Hester in free agency that felt the veteran wasn’t worth the $10MM contract he signed with Atlanta, but it’s looking like a good investment for the Falcons so far. Here’s more from around the NFC:

  • So far, the deal that saw Darren Sproles land with Philadelphia in exchange for a fifth-round pick looks like a steal for the Eagles, and the veteran running back is happy with his situation. As he told reporters on Thursday, including Tim McManus of, Sproles wasn’t initially informed of his impending release by the Saints, but when it turned out that the Eagles were one of a handful of teams interested in trading for him, he told his agent to “make that happen.” Per Sproles, five teams explored acquiring him, and the Eagles were one of the three with serious interest.
  • Within the same piece, McManus takes a look at the unusual case of Eagles linebacker Brandon Graham, who has a chance to make $2.5MM in not likely to be earned incentives, but will need to see a few more snaps to have a chance at that money.
  • The Bears worked out a long list of free agents this week, and Jeff Dickerson of passes along the names in a pair of tweets: Blake Annen (TE), Derek Cox (CB), Brandon Ghee (CB), Mike Harris (CB), Lavelle Hawkins (WR), Kendall James (CB), Derrick Martin (S), David Paulson (TE), Brad Sorensen (QB), Jordan Sullen (CB), Asa Watson (TE), Damian Williams (WR), and Kyle Williams (WR).
  • Linebacker Jamar Chaney tried out for the Saints this week, according to Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun (via Twitter). We heard yesterday that New Orleans also took a look at veteran linebacker Pat Angerer.

Bears Release Derrick Martin

The Bears have cut former Ravens safety Derrick Martin with a non-football injury designation, according to Aaron Wilson of the National Football Post (on Twitter). The move will create room on the roster for former CFL tackle Michael Ola, who was picked up earlier today off waivers from the Dolphins.

The well-traveled veteran has played for five NFL teams over the course of his career and could be on his way to No. 6. Martin appeared in seven games last season for the Bears, recording a tackle on defense and six on special teams, and was re-signed to a one-year deal earlier this year. The 29-year-old has two Super Bowl rings in his collection – one with the Packers and one with the Giants in the following season.

Bears Re-Sign Derrick Martin, Taylor Boggs

6:43pm: Martin’s deal is indeed worth the $855K veteran’s minimum for an eight-year veteran. tweets Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune.

1:11pm: The Bears have re-signed a pair of players eligible for free agency, inking safety Derrick Martin and center Taylor Boggs to one-year contracts, according to Jeff Dickerson of (Twitter link).

Martin, a journeyman who has spent time with the Ravens, Packers, Giants, Patriots, and Bears since 2006, rarely sees any playing time on defense, but figures to compete for a roster spot in Chicago as a special teams contributor. He had been eligible for unrestricted free agency, and will likely be back on a minimum salary contract.

As for Boggs, his options were limited, as he was set to be an exclusive rights free agent. Like Martin, he’ll probably be on a minimum salary deal, with a chance to compete for a place on the Bears’ roster this summer. The 27-year-old has yet to log a snap in a regular season NFL game.