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Chicago Bears to target Pro-Bowler free agents

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The Chicago Bears could be set to make a big splash in free agency.

After a mediocre 8-8 season where the Bears were without Jay Cutler due to large parts through injury, it seems like team is set to try and toughen up their defense.

According to reports in the Chicago Sun-Times, the Bears have a long list of free agents whom have caught their eye.

The two men at the top of that list, after yesterday's franchise tag deadline, are T.J Ward of the Cleveland Browns and Buffalo Bills' Jairus Byrd, two of the league's better players at the safety position.

Byrd wants to become the highest paid player in the league at his position which could prove a stumbling block for the Bears. The former-Bills man also looks set to swap places with Ward and move to the Browns to link up with his former defensive coordinator Mike Pettine.

This makes Ward the most likeliest to play at Soldier Field. Ward had a breakout season in 2013, starting all 16 games and finishing the year with 123 Tackles, 1.5 sacks, 2 Interceptions, 1 forced fumble, and 10 passes defended. 

He was named a second team All-Pro by the associated press.

The Bears also have a real need for a pass rusher and there are three on the market that could turn their head.

Michael Johnson wasn't tagged by the Bengals and is the best option as a 4-3 defensive end. Johnson who had 11½ sacks in 2012. While his production was down last season, at 27 he is young enough to get back up to that level.

The other two rushers available are Lamarr Houston and Michael Bennett, the latter who Bears' Martellus Bennett has been trying to convince to join him at the Bears to play together as brothers.

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