The Bears have signed Michael Gaines to a one-year contract, and he is in position to challenge immediately to be the third tight end on the roster.
The veteran made a visit to Halas Hall on Monday and didn't leave until he had a contract in hand. Gaines is considered a strong blocker and he'll compete with Kellen Davis, the fifth-round pick from last season, for a job.
He's not going to waste any time.
"I'll be back in there at Halas Hall tomorrow morning,'' Gaines said on his way back to his home in Detroit. "Honestly, I can't believe it happened. It's just a privilege to be joining an organization with so much history."
Gaines came to the Bears after visiting the New York Jets last week. He left New York without getting a contract offer, and the Jets went ahead and re-signed 31-year-old veteran Bubba Franks, leaving the Bears with no known competition.
Gaines had a $10 million, four-year contract in Detroit last season, but was let go my the new coaching staff after the draft as the Lions used a first-round pick on Brandon Pettigrew. By signing for just one year, Gaines will have the chance to get back on the market next year at a more opportune time--not the week after the draft--and get another bite at the free-agent apple.
Check back later for more details.