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Bears announce four-year deal for Martellus Bennett

Martellus Bennett, Hakeem Nicks

New York Giants tight end Martellus Bennett, left, celebrates his 6-yard touchdown reception with Hakeem Nicks during the first half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints, Sunday, Dec. 9, 2012, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)


On the first day of free agency last year, the Bears swung a trade for wide receiver Brandon Marshall.

They made a splash on the first day again in 2013. The team has announced that tight end Martellus Bennett has agreed to a four-year deal to leave the Giants for a spot on the Bears roster.

Bennett grabbed some of the earliest headlines after free agency opened with a tweet saying that he was excited to join up with Marshall in Chicago before saying that he actually hadn’t agreed to a deal with the team yet. It didn’t take long for that to change, however.

The Bears got very little from tight ends Kellen Davis and Matt Spaeth last season, which made them obvious bidders for the top tight ends on the market. Bennett is coming off a strong year with the Giants after several years where he did more talking than producing for the Cowboys. Davis is due to make $2.5 million in 2013 and Bennett’s arrival could lead to Davis’ departure as the offseason rolls along.

Chicago has also been linked with tackle Jermon Bushrod and guard Brandon Moore in the first hours of free agency, two players who would help an underperforming line and provide quarterback Jay Cutler with enough time to find Bennett down the field.