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Bears to sign utility man Cordarrelle Patterson to two-year deal

Patterson adds another wrinkle to a versatile Chicago offense, and he gives them the standout kick returner they lacked in 2018.

Buffalo Bills v New England Patriots
The Bears have added some more speed and versatility to their offense.
Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The Chicago Bears are expected to sign Cordarrelle Patterson on a two-year, $10 million deal, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. The move marks the team’s third signing since the legal negotiating period began on Monday.

Patterson, who turns 28 in March, brings versatility and athleticism galore to Chicago’s roster. He has spent most of his career as a wide receiver, but he received more touches as a running back last year with the New England Patriots. He finished the season with 228 rushing yards and a touchdown on 42 carries, as well as 21 receptions for 247 receiving yards and three touchdowns.

Where Patterson provides the most value, though, is on special teams. A two-time first-team All-Pro and Pro Bowler as a kick returner, he has ran six kicks back for touchdowns in his six-year career and has a career average exactly 30 yards per return. The Bears have been on the receiving end of his special teams touchdowns twice: once as a member of the Minnesota Vikings in 2013, and once with the Patriots this past season.

Though the price for Patterson is relatively steep, the signing is a perfect one for the Bears. He provides them with an athletic weapon on offense who can be lined up all around the field, adding yet another layer of versatility to their group of offensive weapons. He joins a Chicago backfield that already has a new look to it after the signing of Mike Davis on Monday. Patterson also projects to be the impactful kick returner they lacked this past season, as he joins a team who finished dead last in yards per kick return in 2018. Along with All-Pro Tarik Cohen as the punt returner, Patterson forms a dangerous special teams tandem for the Bears.