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The Bears Den: April 02, 2014 - Chicago Bears offseason news & notes

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Emery, Bears close to pulling off rare three-part strategy - Moon Mullin: Emery and the Bears are close to doing two distinctly different things at basically the same time: stock a roster with solid veterans while simultaneously building with youth.

Draft preview - Greg Gabriel: With all of their signings in free agency, what do the Bears do in the draft?

Larry Mayer's Chalk Talk - Larry discusses whether Jared Allen has fared better on artificial turf, where the Bears pick in the draft, and championships the Bears won at Wrigley Field.

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Allen ready, excited to help Bears win - Jon Greenberg: After years of losing at Soldier Field as opponent, the jewel of the one-season rebuild of the defense wants to help Bears to Super Bowl.

Allen brings big talk with big sack numbers - Steve Rosenbloom: Houston and Young aren’t Allen, but they would’ve been asked to be that kind of guy. Allen makes them better by allowing the coaches to put them in a position to succeed.

No buyer's remorse for Emery - Michael C. Wright: GM liked Allen's relentless motor late in the season against quality opposition. Playing surface not an issue for Allen.

Urlacher applauds Bears for Allen deal - Dan Wiederer: Urlacher called the gregarious DE "fun to watch" and "fun to be around" and surmised that he’d be a solid performer on the right side of the line after last month’s release of Julius Peppers.

With draft still ahead, Bears’ defense already much improved - Bob LeGere: Phil Emery has laid the groundwork for a sturdier defensive unit with many of the 28 players he's signed since late last year.

[Video] CSNChicago discussion - With Jared Allen in the fold, are the Bears now one of the teams to beat in the NFC? [KAPCON: 5]

Gould disapproves of XP experiment - Jeff Dickerson: Bears kicker thinks proposed changes diminish position, would make it impossible to compare kickers from different eras the way people do for QBs.

Dan Pompei's Q&As - Which of top 5 CBs in the draft are a fit for Bears? ... Is drafting DT still likely for Bears in 1st round?

Mock Draft - Adam Hoge's seven(six)-round mock 3.0 is less defense-heavy than his previous version, reflecting the Bears' moves in free agency.

Draft preview - Alabama FS Ha Ha Clinton-Dix has all the tools to make an immediate impact in a Bears secondary that desperately needs quality young talent [with links to scouting reports]. Brent Sobleski: Clinton-Dix top of the safety class; other position groups.

Bears history - Josh Katzowitz: Just because: George Connor, circa 1950, stiff-arms some poor soul.

Bears history - Paul Sullivan: Wrigley Field's worst Cubs and Bears games.

Sun-Times Bears section here.

Polish sausage

Expect more teams to run ball more often - Pat Kirwan: The Seahawks ran the ball more than most teams and won the Super Bowl. In a copycat league, expect more teams to follow suit in 2014.

Big-name NFL veterans still looking for a job - Gregg Rosenthal: The first wave of NFL free agency is over, leaving one-time stars like Asante Samuel and Ed Reed looking for work at drastically reduced prices -- if they can get it at all.

Know thy enemy: Vikings - Ben Goessling: Premature to assume Zimmer would or wouldn't want to work with Manziel based on the "flags" he's seen, but he'll need to have decided it's the right circumstance to accept all the pomp that comes with the QB.

The best trick plays in NFL history - Alex Gelhar: Some of the best trick plays in NFL history -- the kind of plays that make defenses look utterly foolish.