With Bears’ safety spots wide open, new addition Adrian Wilson using critics as motivationContinue reading.
Bears sign 5-time Pro Bowl S Adrian Wilson
The Bears signed five-time Pro Bowler Adrian Wilson to a one-year deal Monday, adding the veteran to their wide-open safety competition.
Wilson worked out at Halas Hall on Monday and passed the team’s physical after spending last season on the Patriots’ injured reserve with an Achilles’ tendon tear.
Wilson, a strong safety, will compete for the spot left open when the Bears declined to re-sign Major Wright. Free safety Chris Conte is recovering from shoulder surgery; coach Marc Trestman said last week he didn’t know if he would start the preseason on the physically unable to perform list, though Conte has targeted training camp for his return.
The Bears figure to keep the best four or five safeties from a competition that includes free agent acquisitions Ryan Mundy and M.D. Jennings, rookie Brock Vereen and others. They value Wilson’s aggressiveness and his love of the game, and Wilson was looking for an opportunity to compete.
The 34-year-old spent the first 12 years of his career playing strong safety for the Arizona Cardinals. He signed with the Patriots — for three years, $5 million — last season but never played in the regular season after suffering the preseason injury.
In Arizona, he had played 181 games out of a possible 192.
The 6-3, 230-pounder made the Pro Bowl in 2006 and 2008-2011. He was a first-team All-Pro in 2009. He is one of 13 players to intercept 20 or more passes and register 20 or more sacks since the latter became a statistic in 1982.
The Patriots released him in April.
“Want to welcome Adrian Wilson,” linebacker Lance Briggs wrote on Twitter. “Looking forward to taking the field with the enforcer!”
The team also signed tight end Jeron Mastrud, who spent last season with the Raiders, to a one-year contract.
He started 12 of 16 games, but was used mostly as a blocker, catching six balls for 88 yards. He played more than half the Raiders’ snaps last season. The Bears liked a player with starting experience and upside to compete at backup tight end, from which they waived Fendi Onobun last week.