Ogunleye is ready to start his career in Chicago

Lake Forest - The Bears have been searching for a dominant pass rusher for more than a decade. Adewale Ogunleye's arrival in Chicago brings hope that the search is over and he's the missing piece to the Lovie Smith's defense.

"I am extremely excited to be here," Adewale Ogunleye said. "I know that Chicago fans are ready for a great season and so am I."

Despite being traded for a Pro Bowl receiver in Marty Booker and signing a six-year $33.4 million deal, the only pressure Ogunleye wants to be associated with is putting it on the quarterback.

"I've just got to do what I've been doing these last couple years and that's just get to the quarterback," Ogunleye said. "And if you look at it the way, I do, there's no pressure at all because I enjoy sacking quarterbacks. I enjoy playing this game."

Ogunleye's total of 15 sacks in 2003 was three more than the Bears d-line and just three less than the entire defense. Over the past two seasons he has 24.5 sacks.

While Ogunleye didn't practice Monday, he did receive an introduction to the Bears defense from head coach Lovie Smith.

"We'll just try to catch him up as quick as we possibly can, but he'll let us know when he's ready to go," Smith said.

Ogunleye didn't participate in any of the Miami Dolphins off-season workouts and will need time to get back into football shape. He will not play in the Bears third preseason game this Friday against the New Orleans Saints.

No timetable has been set for Ogunleye to begin full contact practices, but the preparation will get him ready for the season opener.

"One thing I do know is come the Detroit Lions I will be ready to play," Ogunleye said.

Smith has preached how important it is for the front four to create pressure for his defense to be successful. While he wouldn't go as far as to say Ogunleye is the missing piece of the equation, Smith did have high praise for the Bears newest acquisition.

"It's hard to say exactly what some great defensive ends have. If you just looked at his speed, he doesn't run a 4.5 or anything like that," Smith said. "Just kind of look at his background and where he's come from (being an) undrafted free agent to become a Pro Bowler this quick. He has something special about him that you really can't put a word on. He's a good pass rusher. He knows how to get to the ball, to the quarterback."

For all the talk of sacks, Ogunleye considers himself a strong run defender. He led the Miami Dolphins defensive line with 73 tackles a year ago and playing on the left side is traditionally a role reserved for run stuffing end.

As undrafted free agent Ogunleye couldn't afford to be a one-dimensional player.

"I love to play the run," Ogunleye said. "For me to get into the Miami system I had to play the run. Jason Taylor was the pass rusher. Coming out of college I thought I was a pretty decent pass rusher. But to play in this league and the only chance I was going to get was I had to be solid against the run."

In the meantime the right end competition has become a two-man battle between Alex Brown and Michael Haynes.

"Right now there are two more games left to the preseason. We're going to let the guys play. It's competition. It's preseason. It's training camp still, so the other end that proves that he deserves to play alongside Wale, that's who will be out there.

At this point Brown has the upper hand, but each day he misses because of a calf strain increases Haynes chances of winning the job. Either way the Bears plan on rotating their defense ends.

"Two guys start, but the way we play, the way we have the guys run to the football, you need more than two defensive ends. That's the position we feel like we're in right now. We feel like we have depth at the defensive end position."


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