Olin Kreutz wanted to finish his career with the Bears. The Bears gave him a final offered and Kreutz decided to walk.
The 13 year veteran was a six-time Pro Bowler and a fan favorite. He started in 183 of 191 games, one shy of the Bears all time record, held by Walter Payton. Although his skills have been in decline, he was still respected as the Bears' locker room leader. Someone will now have to step up and become the locker room leader.
“Other guys step up,” Smith said. “That’s what happens. You have good leaders. Things happen and you find out some of the players who haven’t been in those leadership roles really do have that ability when it’s their time. That’s the situation we’re in right now.
“We like the football player we have right now, and just not Roberto Garza. The leader of your football team needs to be your quarterback. Jay Cutler will be moving into more. Jay has been in a leadership role, but we’re going to ask things from a lot more of our players, Brian Urlacher being one of the team leaders. We have a lot of leaders on our football team that we feel good about.”
In Kreutz place, the Bears signed Chris Spencer, formerly of the Seahawks. He is a six year veteran was a former first round draft pick (26th overall) and started in 70 of 80 games.