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Bears find Urlacher replacement in D.J. Williams

Kansas City Chiefs v Denver Broncos Getty Images

The Bears have moved quickly to find a potential replacement for Brian Urlacher.

According to Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune, the Bears have agreed to a one-year deal with former Broncos linebacker D.J. Williams.

The Broncos parted ways with Williams after a troubled season which featured a pair of suspensions, but the 30-year-old was still playing at a solid level before the trouble.

The former first-rounder could earn up to $1.75 million if he hits a number of playing time incentives and workout bonuses, but there is no guaranteed money in the deal.

That’s less than the deal Urlacher refused, creating the awkward divorce.

The Bears still need a long-term answer in the middle, but they’re no longer desperate.

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35 Responses to “Bears find Urlacher replacement in D.J. Williams”
  1. tokyosandblaster says: Mar 22, 2013 2:12 PM

    Welcome to Chicago, DJ. You’ll start each season strong and miss the playoffs, and you’ll have to endure idiot fans like chi01town and asublimeday.

    Enjoy.

  2. chawk12thman says: Mar 22, 2013 2:15 PM

    No Guarantee Money makes this a very good deal for the Bears. If it works out, they do well. If not, nothing really lost………Urlacher may ultimately wish he had accepted the insulting offer.

  3. bobbysouthside says: Mar 22, 2013 2:16 PM

    Upgrade!!!

  4. mcmeen0576 says: Mar 22, 2013 2:24 PM

    hate to say it….but this feels like an upgrade. Pretty excited!

  5. beauregard says: Mar 22, 2013 2:26 PM

    Yeah, good luck with that. As long as you expect at least four games a year of him being suspended you won’t be all that disappointed.
    DJ has all the talent needed to be a top tier LB, but he makes some of the stupidest off field decisions you can imagine. Good player, when not suspended, but a poor human being.

  6. troybulletinboard says: Mar 22, 2013 2:26 PM

    more like an upgrayedd than an upgrade. the two D’s are for a double dose of pimpin’.

  7. dabearstjm says: Mar 22, 2013 2:29 PM

    I’m usually never for signing guys with off field issues but with this contract Williams is a steal… No guarantees and a chance to prove yourself again why not. Makes the loss of Urlacher not terrible

  8. randyschwimmer7 says: Mar 22, 2013 2:29 PM

    If a Bears fan think this is an upgrade over Urlacher, you have another thing coming. DJ is a hell of a WILL backer, but he is not very good as the MIKE. Trust me when I tell you this. I have been watching since he was drafted. While at Miami, Vilma was the MIKE and DJ the WILL. When Denver put him in the middle, he was mediocre. That is why when we went back to the 43 defense, Fox put him back at WILL. Just a heads up before you think this is any kind of upgrade.

    Oh and you better make sure he never goes to any bars or clubs…..he is one more DUI away from being suspended for a year. HEADACHE.

  9. greenmachin3 says: Mar 22, 2013 2:30 PM

    Blake Costanzo

  10. blackandbluedivision says: Mar 22, 2013 2:30 PM

    Big move. I wouldn’t call it a complete upgrade. There was a reason he got cut in Denver. But, he fills a big hole in the middle of that Defense.

  11. voiceofsweetness says: Mar 22, 2013 2:31 PM

    Very happy with the short term solution. Williams can be a very dynamic player if they get his head right and stays healthy.He should have 3-4 yrs left in him too. Would like to see a proven player to back him up and play SLB. Time to get Lance Louis and Izzy back!

  12. steelerben says: Mar 22, 2013 2:35 PM

    troybulletinboard says:
    Mar 22, 2013 2:26 PM
    more like an upgrayedd than an upgrade. the two D’s are for a double dose of pimpin’.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    +1 internets for the Idocracy reference. I’d like this fifty times if I could.

  13. tdrizzle74 says: Mar 22, 2013 2:41 PM

    My guess is he’ll get a DUI in the offseason, tweet a pic of the teams playbook, and post something way stupid on twitter….and this is by next Monday! Good luck with this one Bears fans. Uhrlacher missed games because he was hurt, not because he was stupid.

  14. thompsonway says: Mar 22, 2013 2:41 PM

    After I read about what Chicago did for Brian Urlacher, (bump in pay in the middle of a contract) I feel more and more that he is just a spoiled kid. Good riddance, if Brian has no more loyalty than that! I still wish that Brian would’ve taken the money and said that he could understand the position that Chicago was in (cash strapped), and that this would be a way of paying back Chicago for all those years of Chicago being loyal to him. Is this the Business part of the game? Running out to the media, and talking bad about the Bears?
    D.J. Williams, welcome……

  15. chipwade says: Mar 22, 2013 2:47 PM

    With the way contracts are going players better the most money they can when their rookie deals expire. The older vets are having a rough go of it.

  16. kabasaman says: Mar 22, 2013 2:48 PM

    The Bears are doing things just to fill the holes for now. Phil Emery will have to start building this team through the draft. I don’t know if they are going to trade down. Lord knows they need more than five picks.
    Maybe San Fran. would be willing to give up a couple of those 15 picks for the greatest kick returner of all time. Maybe a 3rd or 4th. or even 2 number 6 picks. Devin would help the niners.

  17. urlacher54 says: Mar 22, 2013 2:52 PM

    Replacement huh? Isn’t DJ more of a SAM than a Mike?

  18. aciraci says: Mar 22, 2013 2:52 PM

    Moderate risk (because of no guaranteed money) potentially high reward.

    Good move. I am a Giants fan so I have no investment either way.

  19. tdrizzle74 says: Mar 22, 2013 3:00 PM

    I love that this move “excites” Bears fans. You guys are feasting off Denver leftovers, a core group of players that couldn’t win in Denver. The fact that they play in Chicago doesn’t make them any better than what they were before they were cast off, sorry guys.

  20. randyschwimmer7 says: Mar 22, 2013 3:13 PM

    urlacher54 says: Mar 22, 2013 2:52 PM

    Replacement huh? Isn’t DJ more of a SAM than a Mike?

    ________________________________

    NEGATIVE. DJ is, has been, and will always be a WILL. The SAM the past two years (or Strong side linebacker) has been Von Miller. In 2012 Wesley Woodyard stepped into the WILL (or Weak side linebacker) for DJ Williams who was suspended for 9 games and then wasn’t back into football shape when he came back.

  21. blackfoot11 says: Mar 22, 2013 3:18 PM

    The Bears would have been wise to give Urlacher his $3 million plus and until they found his long-term replacement in the draft or FA. I see some fans talk of what Urlacher owes the Bears, sh*t, the Bears owe every player on that D that has carried the team’s success for a long time. The Bears have a big hole to plug.

  22. crownofthehelmet says: Mar 22, 2013 3:24 PM

    Nice upgrade – get rid of a 34yr old HOF’er for a 30yr old benchwarmer.

  23. chi01town says: Mar 22, 2013 3:43 PM

    @tokyo sandblaster
    why are you worried about what Chicago is doing? You should pay attention to that train reack in greenbay. the players are walking out of there so fast its like the place is on fire! and why they are bringing in purple drank Jolly to get the team high? and save the name calling cause you wouldnt say it in my face

  24. ebbycalvinlaloosh says: Mar 22, 2013 3:48 PM

    As a huge Bronco fan and season ticket holder, I can tell you that Williams has always been a slightly above average linebacker playing for superstar money. Off field issues aside, his play has not dropped off tremendously of late, but he never played at an elite level. He is definitely a better WILL than MIKE, which the Broncos found 1st hand by playing him extensively at both positions. He has had seasons where he makes an impressive number of tackles, but an astonishingly high number of them are made 5-6 (or more) yards downfield. He’s a liability in pass coverage, and he has almost no pass rushing ability. Wesley Woodyard took over during Williams’s suspension and held on to the starting job after Williams came back, not because Williams wasn’t in “football shape,” but because Woodyard is a much better football player. The Bears could have done worse than D.J., especially for the money, but Bears fans should not expect big things, especially if he’s playing in the middle.

  25. esplife03 says: Mar 22, 2013 3:59 PM

    Has anyone ever considered that he might actually play WILL for us? After all Nick Roach left, that still leaves a #20 pick for a MIKE LB, we need both positions filled.

  26. drinkdabeers says: Mar 22, 2013 4:02 PM

    “After I read about what Chicago did for Brian Urlacher, (bump in pay in the middle of a contract) I feel more and more that he is just a spoiled kid. Good riddance, if Brian has no more loyalty than that! I still wish that Brian would’ve taken the money and said that he could understand the position that Chicago was in (cash strapped), and that this would be a way of paying back Chicago for all those years of Chicago being loyal to him. Is this the Business part of the game? Running out to the media, and talking bad about the Bears?
    D.J. Williams, welcome……”
    —-
    As a huge Bear fan and a fan of Brian Urlacher since his college days, I completely agree.

  27. whatjusthapped says: Mar 22, 2013 4:14 PM

    The Bears still need a long-term answer in the middle, but they’re no longer desperate.

    Any team that starts Devin Hester at WR and any of the 5 players on the O line is desperate, the difference is, the Bear’s coaching staff doesn’t know it yet.

  28. mfshort34 says: Mar 22, 2013 5:16 PM

    Karlos Dansby please.

  29. seansds3d says: Mar 22, 2013 6:08 PM

    He’s taking less because he has more to prove. As a Bronco fan DJ was pretty disappointing… he could have been good if he didn’t make so many poor choices off the field. Maybe he’ll surprise bear fans but doubtful.

  30. beauregard says: Mar 22, 2013 6:17 PM

    Butkus, Singletary, Urlacher………and DJ Williams?

  31. dayaman says: Mar 22, 2013 8:06 PM

    another former bronco

  32. asublimeday says: Mar 23, 2013 12:08 AM

    TokyoSandblaster looked away from the screen just long enough for Kaepernick to rush for yet another TD against the punch line of a franchise he supports

    I’m selling Packer stock..it’s not real but it IS paper. Would you like to buy it for $500?

  33. pleazenufalready says: Mar 23, 2013 7:55 AM

    Just the other day, some of the Bears’ upper management, when talking about Urlacher, indicated that they only get involved when there’s a “character issue”…….guess they must have been out of the office when this deal went down?

  34. tokyosandblaster says: Mar 23, 2013 10:35 AM

    Chi01town and asublimeday proving my point.

    I can’t remember when I was that stupid, and I can remember being in preschool. It must be tough going through life without any intelligence. I pity you both.

  35. larryboodry says: Mar 23, 2013 1:32 PM

    Low-risk, high-reward signing…To those saying he is an upgrade, no…The Bears would be smart to play Williams at WILL, while replacing Urlacher with someone else.

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