CHICAGO – The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have confirmed a one-year deal for former Chicago Bears’ DT Amobi Okoye. According to NFL reporter Adam Caplan, Okoye’s deal with the Bucs is worth $2 million and includes $700,000 guaranteed.
The Bears acquired the former first-round draft pick from the Houston Texans in 2011 on a one-year deal worth $1.3 million (none of which had been guaranteed).
Okoye was named Defensive Rookie of the Month in September of 2007, but he struggled thereafter and was ultimately released by the Texans last season.
With the Bears, he notched four sacks in 593 snaps (only one start) in 2011.
Okoye is the second defensive tackle the team has lost this offseason after releasing nose tackle Anthony Adams.
It was believed that the Bears would have liked to resign Okoye, but cap restrictions may have limited what they were able to offer the 24 year-old.
"I think Amobi is trying to decide which direction he's going," GM Phil Emery said in a conference call with season ticket holders just one day ago. "We've had conversations with him. So far we haven't been able to work out a deal. I really believe that Amobi is probably going in a different direction."
With Okoye gone, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to imagine the Bears making it out of the first-round of the draft without a defensive lineman.