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Next Peppers? Bears to target Packers free agent DE/LB B.J. Raji

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By Anthony Caruso III
Posted: February 8, 2014 at 1:31 PM EST

The Green Bay Packers are not expected to put up a fight to keep defensive end/linebacker B.J. Raji.

Raji has saw his play decease over the past two years. And a conference rival is expected to go after him heavily.

B.J. Raji (Getty Images)

B.J. Raji (Getty Images)

The Chicago Bears are expressing interest in the soon-to-be free agent. Raji has completed his rookie deal and will become a free agent in March.

The Bears already have a huge contract with a defensive end. A few years ago, they signed Julius Peppers from the Carolina Panthers to a six-year, $84 million dollar deal.

Now, the Bears have asked Peppers to take a pay cut. If he is not willing to take a pay cut from his $18 million dollar salary for this year, the team will release him.

If the Bears resolve the issue with Peppers before March, the Bears could sign Raji to the same contract that Peppers signed in 2010. Yet, Peppers came to the Bears as a sack machine, while Raji only has 10.5 sacks in his career.

Raji hasn’t recorded a sack in the past two years. Yet that will not stop teams from going after the 27-year-old, who is expected to be the top defensive end on the market once the Washington Redskins re-sign Brian Orakpo and the Carolina Panthers franchise tender Greg Hardy.

Raji had 9.5 sacks during the 2010 and 2011 seasons, with 6.5 sacks during the 2010 season. He also had a sack during his rookie campaign in 2009.

His defensive snaps have decreased over the past two years, making it a gone conclusion that he will not return to the Packers next season.


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