No surprise there…the Bears have cut six-year veteran cornerback Nathan Vasher. Vasher turned out to be one of the steals of the 2004 draft when Jerry Angelo selected him for the Bears in the fourth round. In 2004, 2005 and 2006 his play was strong. Then after he signed a $28 million contract extension (of which the Bears eventually paid him over $18 million), his play dropped and injuries ensued.
The real story is where the Bears are at overall at corner. Going into the 2007 season, when the Bears also awarded Peanut Tillman an extension that will pay him close to $40 million over its life, the team looked set for the next 6 years at the position. In 2010, they’ll line up again with Tillman as their #1 and third-year, injury-prone Zackary Bowman as their #2.
We all love Peanut, but the man has taken as much pounding as I’ve seen a DB take over his seven seasons, and one scout called him no better than a marginal #2 corner at this point in his career. And Bowman shows promise but may be a borderline 2nd or 3rd corner.
It’s fantastic that the Bears made a statement by breaking the bank for Julius Peppers, even outspending Daniel Snyder, but tell me how much impact one passrusher can make with the entire defensive backfield still in disarray. Really, someone tell me.