After playing as the sixth cornerback on Saturday night, the Bears have decided to release 10th-year veteran Tim Jennings.
Jennings was set to make $4.4 million this season in the second year of the four-year, $22.4 million deal he signed back in the 2014 off-season. The 31-year-old fell out favor in Chicago with defensive coordinator Vic Fangio coming into town.
In three preseason games, Jennings had four tackles, including three last night. But like stated above he fell behind in the pecking order as Kyle Fuller and Alan Ball were the starters and Sherrick McManis, Terrance Mitchell and Tracy Porter entered the game before him.
The 5-foot-8, 185-pound Georgia product spent his last five seasons with the Bears after playing for the Colts for his first four seasons. From 2010-14 in Chicago, Jennings totaled 250 tackles, 16 interceptions, five forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries.
He was voted to two Pro Bowls (2012, 2013). Jennings had a career-high nine interceptions in 2012 and a career-best three forced fumbles in 2013 along with four interceptions.
However, Jennings’ contract could be a concern. He should get signed rather soon with teams like Carolina and Jacksonville serving as good fits for him.
Though Tim Jennings’ $4.4M salary for 2015 was fully gtd, his deal included offsets. If he signs elsewhere, Bears get cap relief accordingly
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) August 30, 2015
After earning $7.5 million last season, Jennings will certainly have a market for his services. It definitely serves him better to have been let go this early in the process.
“Once the whole regime came in and everybody was here, I kind of knew,” Jennings told the Tribune on Saturday. “But they also gave me a heads up and told me I would be out there competing for a job. I had my best years here. I made two Pro Bowls. I played some good football. I had some ups and downs with injuries but for me, this is where I played my best football.”
The Bears received some bad news on Sunday as safety Ryan Mundy was placed on injured reserve with a hip injury, according to CBS Sports Bears insider Zach Zaidman. The seventh-year pro led the Bears with 103 tackles in 2014 along with four interceptions. He had made 96 straight starts dating back to the 2009 season.
He was expected to be the third safety behind current starters safety Antrel Rolle and rookie Adrian Amos. The Bears also have second-year Minnesota product Brock Vereen.
Along with Jennings, the Bears other notable cuts were running back Daniel Thomas, cornerback Al Louis-Jean, safety Malcolm Bronson, wide receiver John Chiles and tight end Chris Pantale.
The Bears also waived tight end Kevin Greene, wide receivers Levi Norwood and Jeremy Kelley, defensive lineman Olsen Pierre, offensive lineman Cameron Jefferson and long snapper Rick Lovato.
Rookie wide receiver Kevin White was also officially placed on the reserve/physically unable to perform list on Sunday.
That means the Bears have one more cut to make before Tuesday’s 4 p.m. ET deadline where all teams have to get down to 75 players.
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