The Chicago Bears officially missed out on another one of their off-season targets on Tuesday.
Reports Tuesday morning confirmed that Cincinnati Bengals free agent defensive end Michael Johnson signed a 5-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
— Jeff Dickerson (@ESPNChiBears) March 11, 2014
Buccaneers head coach Lovie Smith identified Johnson as the team’s primary target since Saturday and was not going to be outdone by his former team. Smith is quickly assembling the same defense with the Buccaneers that he did with the Bears. One of the first moves Smith made when he was named the head coach of the Bears in 2004 was acquire a legitimate defensive end. Smith is implementing the same strategy with the Buccaneers.
The Bears will likely turn their attention to Oakland Raiders free agent defensive end Lamarr Houston. Houston was a defensive captain for the Raiders last season and received high remarks for his pass rushing ability. The Bears could stand to improve their pass-rushing skills.
With Johnson now off the list, along with Michael Bennett, the Bears have missed out on their top two off-season targets.