Bears place Roquan Smith on Physically Unable to Perform list

Roquan Smith

The Chicago Bears have placed linebacker Roquan Smith on the physically unable to perform list, which is a designation reserved for players who’ve been injured during the offseason program or minicamp, or who are recovering from a football-related injury suffered the previous season.

Smith can attend team meetings while on the PUP list.

Roquan Smith is entering the final year of his rookie contract and will earn $9.75 million in 20222. He’s seeking a lucrative contract extension that will pay him at or more than the contract signed by Indianapolis Colts star, Darius Leonard. Smith’s next deal could exceed $20 million per season.

Smith set a career-high with 163 tackles in 2021. The two-time second-team All-Pro is considered one of the top inside linebackers in the NFL. He’s a core player in the Chicago Bears rebuild and should be locked up on a long-term deal before the end of the summer.

On Tuesday, Bears coach Matt Eberflus confirmed Smith will play the WILL position — weakside linebacker — on Chicago’s defense in 2022. Free-agent signing Nicholas Morrow will be the MIKE (middle linebacker).

Defensive lineman Sam Kamara joined Roquan Smith on the PUP list Wednesday. Safety Dane Cruikshank, cornerback Michael Joseph, and wide receiver Tajae Sharpe were placed on the Non-Football Injury (NFI) list.

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