Bears Insider

No reunion: Ex-Bear Hicks reportedly agrees to join Bucs

Bears Insider
Akiem Hicks

We can officially shut the door on Akiem Hicks returning to the Bears.

The 32-year-old defensive lineman agreed to a one-year contract to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Tuesday.

Hicks played six seasons in Chicago, recording 31 sacks, 397 tackles, 74 tackles for loss, five forced fumbles, and five fumble recoveries. He was named to the Pro Bowl in 2018.

It's not surprising to see Hicks take an incentive-laden deal to join a Super Bowl contender. The Bucs are a good landing spot for Hicks, who should have an opportunity to make an impact next to Vita Vea on the inside.

The Bears have now lost three defensive linemen this offseason, with Hicks joining Eddie Goldman and Bilal Nichols.

Chicago still needs another interior defensive lineman. Earlier this offseason, the Bears reached an agreement with Larry Ogunjobi, but a failed physical voided the deal. New general manager Ryan Poles added Justin Jones, but more help is needed.

Hicks got Bears fans' hopes up two weeks ago when he posted a photo of himself sacking Aaron Rodgers on Instagram. He deleted the post and told Bears fans he was just going through old photos.

The Bears still could look to add to their defensive line rotation. If that's the case, few options remain on the free-agent market, including Ogunjobi, Ndamukong Suh, Brandon Williams, and Sheldon Richardson.

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