NFL: Bears’ Anderson signs tender offer; Manning only vet without deal for 2010
By Vaughn McClure
The Chicago Bears labeled Mark Anderson a starter from the minute aging-veteran Adewale Ogunleye hit free agency. Then the addition of Julius Peppers and subtraction of Alex Brown simply meant the Bears would have two new starters at defensive end.
Now it is up to Anderson to prove he can regain the form his displayed during his 12-sack rookie season. The restricted free agent finally signed his tender offer Friday, paying him $1.759 million this season as the Bears slapped the former fifth-round pick with a second-round tender.
Anderson's signing leaves defensive back Danieal Manning as the lone unsigned restricted free agent.
Defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli saw flashes of the old Anderson toward the end of the 2009 season.
"You noticed the last couple of games, he really kind of let it go, played with some freedom," Marinelli said. "He understands things a little bit better. So I just think it's going to be his moves, having confidence and going. We believe in him. He can do it.
"And I want to bring Izzy (Israel Idonije) along. We've got a big young fella coming in (Corey Wootton). It's good competition."
As for Manning, the Bears were a tad annoyed when he failed to show for the start of voluntary workouts. Manning, formerly a second-round pick, was not thrilled with the low-level tender of $1.176 million he received. He had hoped to negotiate a new deal but eventually showed up for workouts last Monday.
Such wasn't the case with Anderson, who signed an offseason workout agreement as injury protection and worked out with his teammates basically from the start despite being unsigned.
If Manning doesn't sign his tender by June 15, the Bears can reduce his tender to 110 percent of his 2009 base pay, which was $535,000. Manning said he has no plans to seek a trade and seems content to play nickel back if he is not an option at safety.