When the Chicago Bears show up to Bourbonnais to start training camp, each member of their five-man rookie class will be under contract and accounted for:
— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) June 20, 2019
Everybody’s in (@Cubs) after the Bears announced the signing of cornerback Duke Shelley, who joins David Montgomery, Riley Ridley, Kerrith Whyte Jr. and Stephen Denmark as draft picks who are officially under contract. Each of these players will receive a four-year contract as rookies. But because none were first-round picks, there is no fifth-year option to be had for any of the members of the five-man class of draftees.
The Bears drafted Shelley in the sixth round with pick No. 205 overall, which came as a bit of a surprise. Shelley was viewed as an off-the-board pick and it’s not as if Chicago needed a nickel cornerback after signing Buster Skrine to a multi-year deal in free agency. But clearly the team liked what they saw on film, as well as what they heard when Shelley took an official top-30 visit during the pre-draft process. We covered Shelley’s strengths and weaknesses as part of our “Getting to Know” series, which you should check out if time permits.
With Shelley’s signing, Chicago’s offseason is essentially complete. All of the team’s draft picks are on board, there are no public contract squabbles, no notable veterans on the roster bubble’s chopping blocks, and no coaches on the hot seat. So while the kicking question is still up in the air, the next few weeks figure to be a peaceful one in the Bears’ world. But July is coming and training camp will be here soon enough.