The Bears quietly lost another of their free agents on Monday when it was officially announced offensive lineman Rashad Coward signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
This was more a case where they chose not to bring Coward back when he became an unrestricted free agent and he caught on with Pittsburgh.
Coward, an undrafted free agent defensive lineman from Old Dominion, was asked by the Bears to switch sides of the ball in 2017. He played left guard and right guard and tackle, making 10 starts in 2019 when Kyle Long was injured and five in 2020 after injuries and COVID-related absences decimated most of the offensive line.
Coward struggled last season and was benched. Alex Bars took over at right guard after coaches decided to move right guard Germain Ifedi to right tackle as a replacement after Bobby Massie suffered a season-ending injury.
The Bears brought in former Broncos guard and tackle Elijah Wilkinson as a replacement.
The cap situation remains tight for the Bears according to Overthecap.com. On March 29, they were reported to be $422,428 under the salary cap.
Terms have been released on three of their recent one-year signings, although not on running back Damien Williams, linebacker Christian Jones, cornerback Desmond Trufant and cornerback Artie Burns.
Punter Pat O'Donnell signed for $1.75 million. Safety DeAndre Houston-Carson returned for his fifth year in Chicago at $987,500 with a $137,500 bonus.
Wilkinson signed for $990,000 with a $137,500 bonus.
Spotrac.com projects the Bears will need $4.6 million to pay for their draft picks, including $2.38 million for their first-round pick. It's their first first-round pick since 2018.