Throughout the offseason, I stated many times on Twitter that I felt the biggest areas of need for the Chicago Bears were in the trenches, on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball. I wasn’t the only one who felt this way, and the Bears apparently did as well, at least on the defensive side. Earlier this week, the Bears acquired defensive tackle Brian Price for a seventh round pick.
Price, a former second round pick of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. Price grew up in South Los Angeles, in an area were gang activity was rampant. Two of Price’s brothers were killed in gang related shootings. On top of that, earlier this year, one of Price’s sisters was killed by a hit and run driver.
It was after losing his sister that Price suffered what most would consider a mental breakdown. While off the field, life has been a personal hell for Price, he has made the news for some things on the field as well. In week 13 last season, the Bucs were playing the Carolina Panthers. On a second down play, Panthers quarterback Cam Newton was sacked for a huge loss, which would have put the Panthers in a 3rd-and-14 situation. Price, however, shoved a player on Carolina well after the play, resulting in a first down. Bucs coach Raheem Morris sent Price to the locker room for the remainder of the game.
After the loss of his sister, the Bucs sent Price home and allowed him to remain there while the team began workouts. Upon returning, Price got into what was described as an ugly brawl with recent first round pick Mark Barron. Price was again sent home, having never returned to the Bucs.
Now Price will get a chance for a fresh start and a change of scenery. Price picked up 27 career tackles and three sacks during his two year career thus far. Reports say that many scouts feel Price has pro-bowl talent, and it seems the only thing really holding him back his where he is at mentally. Price has also battled some injuries in his career, including a pelvic issue in which he had surgery for. He has also had some hamstring issues, which are likely related to his pelvic issue. Price and the Bears are hoping that those problems are behind him, and they can get the most out of the 23 year old.
At worst, the Bears are taking a chance on a high potential guy and gave up very little to do so. At best, the change of scenery helps Price shake the hellacious life he seems to have had, and becomes a regular in the rotation at defensive tackle for the Bears. Regardless, most can agree this is one guy who you can root for.
Follow Chris on Twitter: @midwaygasper