The Bears have released defensive tackle Eddie Goldman, Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported on Friday. Rapoport mentioned in his tweet that the team tried to find a suitor through a trade, but they have opted to release Goldman, instead.
EDIT: The Bears have officially announced Goldman’s release on Monday, March 14.
It seemed like a foregone conclusion that Goldman, still just 28 years old, would not be on the Bears’ roster for much longer. He was slated to have a cap hit of $11.81 million in the 2022 season, and given Chicago’s shift to a base 4-3 scheme, his skill-set no longer projected as a fit for their roster.
Goldman was the No. 39 overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft and was a key piece in Chicago’s switch to a base 3-4 system in Ryan Pace’s first year as the team’s general manager. He played in 81 games and started in 73 games in his 7 seasons with the team. He opted out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns.
PFF’s Brad Spielberger stated that the Bears will save $6.66 million this year, indicating the move is likely not a post-June 1 cut, which would save more money this offseason but push his cap hit further down the road.
The Bears continue their youth movement and their purging of expensive contracts, having already released Tarik Cohen and trading Khalil Mack in the last two days alone. Khyiris Tonga figures to be a candidate to replace Goldman in the starting lineup, and with the likes of Akiem Hicks and Bilal Nichols also slated to hit free agency, Chicago’s defensive line will likely look different in 2022.