5 NFL Teams Who Could Call Brian Urlacher Out of Retirement in 2013
Two of the greatest linebackers in NFL history retired this past offseason, with the Baltimore Ravens' Ray Lewis walking away after winning the Super Bowl in February and the Chicago Bears' Brian Urlacher retiring via Twitter in May.
Both players have plans for the upcoming season, as Lewis will serve as a contributor for ESPN's NFL coverage after joining the network in March and Urlacher is currently an analyst for the newly-created Fox Sports 1, but is there still a chance that the latter could pull a Brett Favre and return to the league?
During his 13 years in the NFL, Urlacher totaled 1,353 tackles to go with 41.5 sacks and 22 interceptions, leading the Bears to the playoffs four times, including a Super Bowl appearance in 2007 in which they lost to the Indianapolis Colts by a score of 29-17.
In addition to Hall of Fame-worthy numbers, Urlacher went to eight Pro Bowls and was a five-time All-Pro performer while winning the NFL Rookie of the Year Award in 2000 and the NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award in 2005. He started 180 of the 182 games he played in, the third-most starts in franchise history behind running back Walter Payton (184) and center Olin Kreutz (183).
That is some elite company, and we would all totally understand if the Pasco, WA native decided to do what players rarely do: spend his entire career with one team. If he does decide to return, though, there have to be plenty of teams who would give him a look.
Here's a look at five NFL teams who could call Urlacher out of retirement in 2013.
5. Denver Broncos
The Denver Broncos are already one of the favorites to win the Super Bowl, but with linebacker Von Miller set to miss the first six games of the season after a failed drug test, why not bring in Urlacher to replace him and improve the position's depth when Miller returns in Week 7? Honestly, signing Urlacher would be a good move even if Miller wasn't going to miss time.
4. Minnesota Vikings
Who wouldn't want to see how Bears fans would react if Urlacher were to sign with their NFC North rivals, the Minnesota Vikings? And given that the Vikings made the playoffs last year, the 35-year-old might be willing to suit up for them and return more motivated than ever.
3. Dallas Cowboys
The Dallas Cowboys have to be a potential landing spot for any free agent, and I can't see why Urlacher would be any different. The fans in "Big D" would love him forever if he were to help take them back to the promised land, where they haven't been in a long time.
2. Pittsburgh Steelers
Is there really a better fit for a hard-nosed defensive player than the Pittsburgh Steelers, who perennially boast one of the top defenses in football? I certainly can't think of one.
1. New England Patriots
Speaking of perennially boasting something, the New England Patriots are always one of the favorites to reach the Super Bowl, and with good reason. They have one of the best offenses in the NFL every year and arguably one of the greatest coaches of all time, so why wouldn't Urlacher consider taking his talents to Boston?