The Bears agreed to terms with 11 undrafted free agents following the completion of the 2012 draft, including Troy offensive tackle James Brown, who was projected as a third- or fourth-round pick and was 54th overall on Mel Kiper, Jr.'s draft board. Another amateur draft board rated Brown ahead of Illinois OT Jeff Allen -- the King High School product who went 44th overall to the Kansas City Chiefs.
The Bears' other undrafted free agents are Western Illinois WR Terriun Crump, Wyoming RB Alvester Alexander, Old Dominion DT Ronnie Cameron, Louisiana Tech LB Adrien Cole, Maine S Trevor Coston, West Texas A&M WR Britton Golden, Albany OT A.J. Greene, Wayne State S Jeremy Jones, Liberty WR Chris Summers and Southern Mississippi LB Ronnie Thornton.
The 6-3, 306-pound Brown was highly rated coming after the college season despite being raw and having played against top-flight competition. But he lost ground at the Senior Bowl and scouting combine, where he reportedly did not show the quickness necessary to compete against NFL defensive linemen. Still, he's still an intriguing prospect because of his athleticism and versatility -- he also is a prospect at guard.
The scouting report on Brown in Pro Football Weekly's draft guide indicates he's got more than a snowball's chance to make it in the NFL: Good footwork and arm-length, humble yet aggressive (''fiery on-field temperament'') and he can carry more weight. His negatives mostly involve technique -- not usually an automatic a deal-killer for NFL prospects from small colleges who have the ability to learn. Whether or not he has that trait will be key. Guys like Brown usually have to go to the right team at the right time -- the Bears certainly qualify as that kind of "fit" for James Brown.