The Chicago Bears didn’t get too much from Jermon Bushrod in the three years he was there, but that doesn’t mean his NFL run is over, with interest coming from both the Miami Dolphins and Minnesota Vikings.
The 31-year old left tackle, who played for the New Orleans Saints from 2007 to 2012 and even made two Pro Bowls, was released by the Bears last month, mostly due to a shoulder surgery he had with the Bears not interested to see how he bounced back from it. He played in 42 games for the Bears over the last three seasons, but after starting all of them in 2013 and 2014, he had just four starts last season, signaling the end for him in Chicago.
He’s going to visit the Vikings (with the NFC North known for in-division switches) and the Dolphins, and while sometimes these things take time, free agency seems to be moving at a very high pace this year, especially for teams with plenty of money to spend. The Vikings have $22 million to spend, the Dolphins have $27 million to spend. Bushrod should fit right in with that kind of cap space available, and less and less big money free agents left on the board.
When he signed with the Bears back in 2013 it was a big five year contract worth $35.965 million including an $11 million signing bonus. By cutting him before the 2016 season, the Bears created $4.3 million in cap space although it did cost them $4.4 million in dead money. His cap hit in 2015 was going to be $8.9 million, and the Bears didn’t see him lasting that long and especially being worth that kind of money in the long run.
He’s been in the NFL since 2007, coming out of Towson, selected by the Saints in the 4th round. He became a starter for them in 2009 and was part of their Super Bowl run that season. Overall he has played in 108 NFL games over his nine seasons, starting in 96 of them.