Bears expected to release Bennett
Chicago Bears receiver Earl Bennett declined a request to take a pay cut and is expected to be released, according to a source familiar with the situation.
Bennett took a pay cut in 2013 and lowered his salary by $1 million.
Bennett had a cap number of $1.35 million (after the reduction) last year, but was scheduled to count $2.45 million against the Bears' cap in 2014 and earn a total of $2.45 million (that included a $100,000 roster bonus).
Bennett finished 2013 with 32 receptions for 243 yards and four touchdowns, but had to miss the final game of the year versus the Green Bay Packers to be with his ailing brother who tragically passed away in the offseason.
Bennett has been a reliable target throughout his Bears career when healthy. After not catching a single pass his rookie year of 2008, Bennett has 185 receptions for 2,277 yards and 12 touchdowns over the past five seasons in just 78 regular-season games.
The Bears also have asked veteran kick returner/wide receiver Eric Weems to take a pay cut from the $1.1 million total salary he is scheduled to earn in 2014, according to a source familiar with the situation.
Weems is expected to be released if he declines the proposed salary reduction, per the source.