CHICAGO – The Bears are doing what they can with what they have this offseason in terms of roster improvement. And even though the bulk of free agency and the NFL Draft may be over, there are still some guys out there who could help in 2021.

One such player is former Panthers and Bills offensive lineman, Daryl Williams.

Williams is a former fourth-round pick out of Oklahoma who is now entering his eighth season in the league. He was coming up as one of the NFL’s better offensive linemen (second-team All-Pro nod in 2017) before a devastating knee injury kept him from playing  in 2018.

It took Williams a couple of years to regain his form, but once he did, the Bills awarded him with a three-year, $24 million contract before the start of the 2021 season.

Williams entered the 2021 season as the team’s starting right tackle -a position he played in Carolina- but had to get moved inside due to struggles. However, he was a very solid player once he moved inside.

As it turns out, the guard position is still in flux for the Bears. Cody Whitehair, arguably the team’s best offensive linemen, has one of the starting spots locked down. The other starting guard position still has question marks and it’s doubtful that Sam Mustipher and/or Dakota Dozier will turn in quality reps this season.

Adding Williams not only bolsters the interior depth along the offensive line, but he could end up winning the starting job. If that happens, he could certainly turn into a quality starter at just 29-years-old.

He wouldn’t be very expensive, either. The main reason Williams was released by Buffalo was because his contract came with the idea that he’d be the starting right tackle. Guards obviously don’t make as much as tackles. So, naturally, the Bills expected to pay Williams less once he moved inside.

Williams doesn’t have the athleticism that Bears GM Ryan Poles loves, but he has shown he can play in a zone scheme a la his days in both Carolina and Buffalo. Meaning, he could certainly be a fit in Luke Getsy’s offense. He could also play right tackle in a pinch, if needed.

There’s no guarantee as to whether or not Williams will be on the roster in 2023, either. But, this move would be more about keeping Justin Fields upright, more than anything. And, who knows, maybe the Bears do find a guy who can contribute over the next few years, as well.

Featured image via Jamie Germano via Imagn Content Services, LLC