Chicago Sun-Times

Bears make another move in free agency, bring back RB Jones

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A week later, the Bears have their second free-agent signing.

This time they lured back veteran running back Kevin Jones as he agreed to a $3.5 million, two-year contract Friday afternoon. Jones is looking forward to being a bigger part of the offense in 2009 after he saw only limited playing time last season, getting just 34 carries and only 21 after the season opener. But the former first-round pick maintained all along that he wanted to return and did so after a recruiting trip to Buffalo where the Bills offered him a contract.

"He looked at last year as kind of a bounce-back year for him,'' agent Drew Rosenhaus said. ``Kevin looks at this year as one in which he can really contribute and be a big part of the team and offense and work well with Matt Forte. A lot of the league is going to multiple running back attacks and hopefully he can contribute in that capacity. He felt close to the Bears' coaches, players and the entire organization and although the Bills made a wonderful effort to sign him it was hard to leave. He's a very loyal person.''

According to a league source, Jones receives $1 million in bonus money--a $500,000 signing bonus and a $500,000 roster bonus. His base salary this year will be $1 million. He was a workout bonus worth $350,000 in 2010 and a base salary of $1.15 million.

The Bears remain hopeful that they will be able to sign John St. Clair. Veteran minicamp begins March 16. The Bears made their first free-agent signing a few hours into the shopping season last week when they signed offensive lineman Frank Omiyale to a $11.5 million, four-year contract.

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14 Comments

Ooohh. Smokin'! These Bears are Super-Bowl bound now.

This makes sense. KJ may just turn into something this year. Last year he was coming off an injury that should have finished his career and of course was not full speed. If he's at 90% of what he was pre-injury we have a pretty good complimentary back for Mr. Forte.

Now go get Holt and a vet safety...

Finally an upgrade at the RB position, wish we could have had this guy last year, would have totally made the playoff's. Oh wait, forget it. Well if we get St. CLair back that will be an upgrade over last year, cause last year he started on the line and this year he would start on the line, thus we would be better by being the same.

I new Angelo was a clever fox, he's using the old improve the team without changing a thing philosophy. Clever man.

I like this move. Yes, last year wasn't the best for Kevin. But let's not forget two things: 1) He just got back from ACL surgery; it can take upwards of 7 months to get back, and each person is different. It can take less time, or even more time. On a similar note, do not forget that athletes undergo such surgery a lot, and don't exactly play the way they're used to. It's not as if Jones' case was anything new to the sporting world. 2) He only saw 34 touches last year. It wasn't until near the end of the year that he saw more play time, but on ST. I think everyone was being cautious with Kevin.

Jones is now 1 year removed from his surgery. He should be healed by now. He also stated his desire to remain a Bear. I like his attitude, and think he can be a solid backup for Forte.

I agree Don
Although I'm not being sarcastic like you.
Good signing.
Go bears!

yippee

Creighton, do you actually, uh, cheer for the Bears? You are a fan, right? I know this isn't earth shattering, but Jones should be healthier and improved over last year. Granted there is nothing sexy about the Bears off season thus far, but this is a move that actually makes sense.

Good move Bears!!

I think it's good to get Kevin Jones back with the Bears. He has real potential as a backup and could start if Forte were to be injured. Plus he comes at a bargain price and is a year removed from aa severe injury, that he can come back from.

He started off with more than 1,100 yards with a bad Lions team as a rookie. He does not have a lot of mileage and can catch the ball out of the backfield, with a 4.0 career average yards per carry.

Here are his career stats.

Chicago Bears 11 0 34 109 3.2 16 0 2 5 2.5 3 0 -- --
2007 Detroit Lions 13 10 153 581 3.8 34 8 32 197 6.2 16 0 2 1
2006 Detroit Lions 12 12 181 689 3.8 52 6 61 520 8.5 26 2 5 5
2005 Detroit Lions 13 13 186 664 3.6 40 5 20 109 5.5 28 0 2 0
2004 Detroit Lions 15 14 241 1,133 4.7 74 5 28 180 6.4 34 1 2 1
TOTAL 795 3,176 4.0 74 24 143 1,011 7.1 34 3

Now the Bears do not have to concentrate so much on a backup for Forte and can make there top priority the O line, WR and safety. Although, I still firmly believe that you take the best most elite/special player available at #18 not based on need and that may be linebacker because of this years exceptional depth, with 3 or 4 players that are truly special.

If the Bears can land Holt, that would be a very good move as well, he still has some fuel left and would be a great start opposite Hester.

Go Bears

I like the move, I didn't last season, but now a year removed from knee surgery, Jones should be a lot more effective. He looked good playing special teams toward the end of the season, and should be a better runner this season. Kevin Jones has the ability to break a big run when he was healthy, and a one two punch of a healthy Jones [this is key] and Forte, will make the Bears a better running team. This signing also takes away a need [#2 running back] heading into the draft.

As far as John St.Clair goes, if he isn't signed by the 16th, I look for the Bears to line Frank Omiyale up at right tackle in minicamp. This is just a hunch, I could be wrong, but thats my guess. I don't see any reason Frank Omiyale couldn't play right tackle for the Bears, he's got nice size at 6-4 310lbs, he's spent most of his career at tackle, and did a pretty good job at tackle when he got a chance to play last season in Carolina, we'll see, it should be interesting GO BEARS!!

I like the signing. Jones can contibute to our offense. Now if we can get Ron Turner to be a lil more creative with the offense. IMO, the is no reason for a slow, immobile Mckie to be on the field, when we can have Jones and Forte in the backfield at the same time giving us a more versatile threat. Even when we send Forte out wide, we still have a rushing threat in the backfield. How is that not effective? Go Bears!!!

Good signing by the Bears. He should be able to contribute more this year after allowing his knee to heal more fully. I'm sure Matt Forte won't mind a little company and competition is good.

Hopefully he'll actually need to wash his uniform after a game.

I would just like to see Garret Wolfe worked into the rotation. If you could get Forte, Jones and Wolfe into productive situations, then I see the Bears as 'getting of the bus running'.

Could be some nice variety there...

Yes, I feel Jerry had no idea what he was talking about when he said Omiyale would play OG, how can anyone but the Coach say that? I feel he will play tackle as well, and the KJ signing was good, but I do agree with Creighton, that this signing is nothing to say we did good in Free Agency over, but a bone is a bone, and I liked KJ last year, but who knows if he will get off the bench again? Lovie has a big thing for that bench for some reason.

YAAWWWNNNN Someone wake me up when Jerry actually DOES something this off season. Of course, AFTER he gets permission from Mike McCaskey to spend "alittle" money on an over the hill WR .

Kevin: "I don't see any reason Frank Omiyale couldn't play right tackle for the Bears, he's got nice size at 6-4 310lbs, he's spent most of his career at tackle, and did a pretty good job at tackle when he got a chance to play last season in Carolina, we'll see, it should be interesting GO BEARS!!"

Maybe because he is a left tackle and not a run blocker? If you want proof of that, the only game he played in last season, they took the starting, pro-bowl LT and moved him to RT. The ONLY reason a team would do that is because the backup (Omiyale) is a one-trick pony.

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on March 6, 2009 5:00 PM.

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