The Bears’ move to a 3-4 defense means a new position for Lamarr Houston, the team’s big-money, free-agent signing from last March.
“He’s going to be an outside linebacker, that’s where he’ll start,” coach John Fox at Halas Hall on Wednesday. “What he ends up being, until we hit the grass we can’t evaluate it. It’s really kind of too early to stay, but he’ll start as an outside linebacker.”
It will be a crowded position group, which now includes Pernell McPhee. Jared Allen, Willie Young and Shea McClellin also will work at outside linebacker.
“We still have two big periods (free agency and the draft) to improve and add to a football team,” Fox said. “Then we’ll stack them up and let them compete when we get that opportunity.”
After four promising seasons with the Oakland Raiders, Houston received a five-year contract worth $15 guaranteed from former Bears general manager Phil Emery last year.
But Houston was a major disappointment in 2014. His season ended when he tore his right anterior cruciate ligament celebrating his only sack of the year against the New England Patriots in Week 8.
“Lamarr is doing good,” general manager Ryan Pace said. “I don’t think we should talk about anybody’s rehab and exactly where they’re at. He’s doing well. We’ve spoken to him several times. He’s working hard. We’re comfortable with where he’s at going forward.”