CHICAGO – The Chicago Bears agreed Friday to a one-year contract with linebacker D.J. Williams, a possible replacement for Brian Urlacher.
The deal comes two days after the Bears said they couldnt reach an agreement with Urlacher, the eight-time Pro Bowl selection and the heart and face of the franchise.
Williams gets a fresh start after missing time last season because of suspensions.
This is a great opportunity for D.J. to restart his career after coming off suspension for part of the 2012 season, general manager Phil Emery said. We see a player that has very good athletic upside who can contribute immediately at Mike (middle) linebacker.
Williams missed nine games while serving a pair of NFL-mandated suspensions last season and was released by the Broncos on the eve of free agency, freeing up his $6 million salary.
Reed finds match made in Texas
Ed Reed knew right from the start of free agency that he wanted to play for the Texans and that his days in Baltimore were over.
The nine-time Pro Bowl safety signed a three-year, $15 million contract with Houston, adding championship experience to the Texans defense.
Schedule conflict has Ravens on road
The Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens will open their title defense on the road next season because of a scheduling conflict with the Orioles. The Orioles are scheduled to host the Chicago White Sox that same night. The Ravens and Orioles share a parking lot.
Around the league
Cleveland signed free agent tight end Kellen Davis, who played last season with Chicago, and former Atlanta cornerback Chris Owens to one-year and contracts. St. Louis cornerback Trumaine Johnson was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence in Missoula, where he played college football for the University of Montana.