The Chicago Bears have signed former New England Patriots defensive lineman Akiem Hicks to a two-year contract.
Hicks has been in Chicago since Friday. He was scheduled to meet with the Detroit Lions this weekend but he never left the Windy City.
Hicks, 26-years-old, is a former third-round pick of the New Orleans Saints in 2012. He spent four-plus seasons in New Orleans before being traded to the New England Patriots in Week 4 last season.
In 13 games with the Patriots, he tallied 21 total tackles and 3.0 sacks.
Hicks (6-5, 324) is a massive, hulking defensive lineman who can play nose guard or 5-technique defensive end in the Bears' 3-4 defense. With Hicks alongside second-year nose tackle Eddie Goldman (6-3, 332) the Bears have two beefy interior defenders who excel at occupying space and eating up blockers. That should be a great benefit to the club's new inside linebackers Danny Trevathan and Jerrell Freeman.
During his five-year career, Hicks has 140 tackles, 9.5 sacks, 1 pass breakup and 1 forced fumble. He provides a substantial upgrade over former D-line starter Jarvis Jenkins.