Bears cut Bennett, sign Steltz, McCray

The Chicago Bears have officially released wide receiver Earl Bennett, while signing safeties Craig Steltz and Danny McCray.

After refusing to take a pay cut, the Chicago Bears have officially terminated the contract of wide receiver Earl Bennett. The team will save $2.45 in cap space by cutting Bennett.

Bennett has started 29-of-78 games since being drafted by the Bears in the third round (70th overall) of the 2008 NFL Draft out of Vanderbilt. Over the course of his six-year career, Bennett has compiled 2,277 receiving yards on 185 catches (12.3 ypc) and 12 touchdowns. He has also gained nine yards rushing on two attempts. On special teams, Bennett has returned 17 punts for 169 yards (9.9 avg) and five kickoffs for 73 yards (14.6 avg).

The Bears have also re-signed safety Craig Steltz to a one-year contract. The 6-1, 210-pound Steltz has started 8-of-77 contests, collecting 97 tackles (64 solo) – including one sack and three tackles for losses – two pass deflections, one interception and three forced fumbles during his six-year career. Steltz has also added 58 special teams stops after originally entering the league as a fourth round pick (120th overall) by the Chicago Bears in the 2008 NFL Draft out of LSU.

In 2013, Steltz played in 16 games with one start, tallying 14 tackles and one pass break-up while adding 14 special teams tackles.

The club also signed veteran safety Danny McCray today to a one-year deal. The 6-1, 221-pound McCray has started 10-of-60 games, recording 104 tackles (64 solo) – including one sack and two tackles for losses – seven pass deflections, two interceptions and one forced fumble during his four-year career as a Cowboy. McCray has also added 73 special teams stops after originally entering the league as an undrafted free agent with the Dallas Cowboys. He played his college ball at LSU.

McCray played in 15 games in 2013, collecting eight tackles on defense and an additional eight on special teams.

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