Chicago Sun-Times

Could Bears be a player for Amobi Okoye?

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The Houston Texans are actively shopping defensive tackle Amobi Okoye, the 10th overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft.

If they can't find a trade partner, then the Texans are expected to waive him.

His production has been a disappointment, with only 11 sacks in four seasons.

Not what you expect from a player picked so high.

So why should the Bears be interested?

Well, Okoye was heralded for his athleticism coming out of Louisville. He's flashed that during his career, as well.

Second, the Bears have Rod Marinelli, widely considered one -- if not the best -- defensive line coach in the league. Marinelli also relishes a chance to work with young players with athleticism.

Third, Okoye's price tag is reasonable. He enters the final year of his rookie contract, scheduled to make $2.95 million.

Fourth, he's 24. As in 24 YEARS OLD. And he's not turning 25 until next June.

The Bears have parted ways with former Pro Bowl defensive tackle Tommie Harris. Not that I'm comparing the two players. But, Okoye is extremely athletic for a 315-pound man.

Within the division, I'll bet you Minnesota Vikings defensive line coach Karl Dunbar would also be intrigued. In my years of covering, Dunbar also welcomed a chance to work with young players with potential.

Why are the Texans dumping him? Well, in addition to production, Okoye is also not considered an ideal fit in Wade Phillips' new 3-4 scheme.

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8 Comments

I would like this move, as it would get us a relatively young 3 technique to see if he can get it done. While Marinelli hasn't made Pro Bowlers out of UDFAs, he has done a fine job getting more production out of Toeaina, Idonije, and managed to get Wootton in on some action late in the year (he will be one of my favorite Bears as long as he is in Chicago, simply because he put an end to the Favre circus, hopefully for the last time).

Tommie Harris' issues were more gut and heart related than anything else, so I do not hold Marinelli responsible for his failures on the field.
Okoye, Paea, and Toeaina would be a decent rotation, especially if we are able to get Adams back to round it out. We also still have Tank Tyler on the roster, who might be able to at least secure a roster spot.

Is Okoye worth our 3rd rounder in 2012? Probably not, but we have an extra, assuming Carolina's pick is better than ours in the upcoming draft. Based on what Haynesworth went for, we should be able to throw a 6th rounder at them and get him. But we could probably get him on the free agent market if they waive him, but will likely lose out to other teams if someone claims him off waivers.

Should be interesting. I am concerned we are looking at the DL, and are missing most of our targets on the OL, a much bigger need right now. And what's with the Cowboys castoff party?

I truly hope the Bears will land this kid. There is simply too much potential with him at 24 years old not to give it a shot. The question is who or what do they give up to get him, future draft pick perhaps and who on the roster would be attractive to the Texans?

Strong,athletic and powerful, this kid could be a good longtime contributor to the defense.

Lets face the fact that Bears football will always be about great defense. Lets hope our anemic offense can somehow make it to the top 10 this year instead of middle of the road with far too many turnovers in the red zone. Hanie, may just be the best QB of the bunch, when you measure the heart.

Sean:

I'd like to take a look at Okoye, he was never going to be a fit in the Texans 3-4 scheme, he's a 4-3 tackle and he could give us some stoudt run support up the middle like we get from Double AA who we currently still don't have signed. Okoye together with Paea, Adams, Toeiana and Melton could be a solid middle for this years BEARS team.

I'm still not sold on the williams signing or the Olsen trade, looks like we went backwards their, but I'm keepint the faitrh that the team will add real talent from the FA market over the weekend. Go BEARS!

I would feel a lot better about Olsen if they dropped a 4th or 5th rounder on this guy. That would be a case of scheme taketh and scheme giveith back.. They would need to get an extension from him if that happened? Maybe even the 3rd they got for Olsen.

Okoye is cat quick at 315 and could easily be a Marinelli project that worked. Can we call him Amobi Tommie-who?

Chicago shouldn't trade for Texans defensive tackle Amobi Okoye. He's not gonna help much as far as pass rushing inside, and the guy has never had over 40 tackles in a single season. I think he was a little over hyped coming out of Louisville and got drafted a little higher than maybe he should have. To be polite, he was a bust. He is your prototypical DT that Rod Marinelli covets, and he's got youth. So maybe a coach like Marinelli can get something out of him? I'd wait till the Texans cut him, and then bring him into camp for a look see and go from there.

The Bears just resigned Anthony Adams, signed rookie Stephen Paea, and already have Matt Toeaina and Henry Melton who both look to have potential, I think they'll be fine inside on the defensive front GO BEARS!!

I think it worth the chance, what could be the down side? Some one young and atheletic who might give some pass rush. It could only help Peppers and if he doesnt workout than the contract isnt that huge. Yet again this is the Bears we will see.

I go along with your thoughts here, Sean. Tommy Harris has been emminently replaceable the last two years. Okoye is bound to be an improvement and has the potential to really blossom into a solid force. Let's hope the Bears get him.

This I believe is a diamond in the rough. This player is still very young and very athletic. I believe the coaching staff can really help Amobi Okoye be the pass rusher needed. Peppers needs serious help, plus they even made Idonije look decent. I hope they give him a shot.

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This page contains a single entry by Sean Jensen published on July 29, 2011 11:38 AM.

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