The Bears signed running back Jacquizz Rodgers to a one-year deal on Tuesday. The 25-year-old has spent the past four seasons as a complementary back in Atlanta, serving as a backup to Steven Jackson the last two years.
New Bears general manager Ryan Pace is well acquainted with Rodgers having seen Rodgers play the Saints twice per season as NFC South rivals.
While Rodgers has never been a workhorse running back, what he has been is a great change-of-pace player with explosive playmaking ability. Much like the Bears’ Matt Forte, Rodgers is a player capable of catching passes out of the backfield. He caught 53 passes in 2012 and 52 in 2013.
Rodgers, like most of the Bears’ free agent signings this offseason, is a on a short-term, prove-it deal. There’s no guarantee he makes the roster, but he offers the team some versatility both on the field and in April/May’s draft. If a good running back presents himself to the Bears in the mid rounds, then the Bears aren’t locked into Rodgers long term.