The Bears agreed to terms on a one-year contract with former New England Patriots safety Brandon Meriweather on Sunday. Meriweather, drafted 24th overall in the 2007 draft, has already made two Pro Bowls and has 12 career interceptions in 64 games.
Meriweather is the latest former first-round draft pick to join the Bears on a short contract with the hopes of drawing interest in next year’s free agency. It’s a good strategy by general manager Jerry Angelo because it involves little risk to players who “bet on themselves” and it forces those players to perform at their best in order to increase their value.
I’ve identified safety as the Bears’ biggest weakness with Chris Harris as the only proven veteran on the squad. Major Wright was given the starting job at free safety in this, his second season on the team, but Wright’s injury past is a cause for concern, as is his coverage skills. Backups Craig Steltz and Chris Conte both were injured in the last preseason game against the Browns and neither one is a starting-caliber safety — at least not this year.
It’s good to see the Bears identify a problem and strike at a position of need to try to improve this year.