Former Longtime Bears Starter Finds New Home With Familiar Face

Cody Whitehair

Getty Cody Whitehair just signed a one-year deal with the Las Vegas Raiders.

Former Chicago Bears offensive lineman Cody Whitehair has a new home.

The Bears released Whitehair and veteran safety Eddie Jackson in February and while Jackson has yet to find a new team, Whitehair is signing a one-year deal with the Las Vegas Raiders.

Pro Football Network’s Adam Caplan first reported the news, also revealing Whitehair’s new contract is for $2.5 million ($1.4 million guaranteed).

Whitehair, 31, spent all eight of his NFL seasons in the Windy City, making the Pro Bowl in 2018. A second-round pick out of Kansas State for the Bears in 2016, Whitehair played in 124 games for the team, starting 118. Now, he’ll join a familiar face in Vegas.

New Raiders OL Cody Whitehair Reunited With Former Bears OC Luke Getsy

The Bears fired former offensive coordinator Luke Getsy at the end of the 2023 regular season. Getsy has since landed with the Raiders in the same role, and he’ll be getting a lineman he knows well in Whitehair. The duo spent the last two seasons working together in Chicago.

Age appeared to be getting the best of Whitehair last year. He had a career-low 45.0 overall grade from Pro Football Focus and he wasn’t as effective as he had been in previous seasons.

The veteran OL had issues snapping the ball on multiple occasions and was removed from an October 2023 contest against the Minnesota Vikings after repeatedly struggling at center. In 454 pass block snaps last season, he allowed three sacks, four quarterback hits and 15 hurries.

Despite his recent struggles, versatility and durability were Whitehair’s calling cards in Chicago. Over his career with the Bears, the veteran OL played 3,444 snaps at left guard, 3,927 snaps at center and 208 snaps at right guard.

He missed five games in 2022, but other than that, Whitehair never missed more than two games in a season.

“We felt like it was the right time to give them an opportunity to go test the market to see what’s out there for them,” Bears general manager Ryan Poles said about Whitehair and Eddie Jackson.

“I wanted to do right by them and do it as early as possible so they can put their plans in place. But really thankful for their leadership and everything they’ve brought to the organization.”

“I would like to sincerely say thanks to the Chicago Bears for giving me the opportunity to play for such a historic franchise,” Whitehair wrote in a statement after his release. “Thank you to all of my teammates for all the great memories and friendships that I made throughout my time in Chicago.”

What Will LG Look Like for the Chicago Bears in 2024?

Teven Jenkins will be the likely starter for Chicago at left guard next season. Jenkins is entering Year 4, a pivotal one, as he’s now in line for a contract extension.

Jenkins has been the team’s best offensive lineman over the last two seasons, but injury issues have limited him to 13 games in 2022 and 12 games in 2023. That makes the depth behind him all the more important.

Chicago signed veteran offensive lineman Matt Pryor to a one-year deal in March, and he’ll likely be behind Jenkins on the depth chart.

Another versatile O-lineman, Pryor has played right guard and both right tackle positions over his five seasons in the NFL. Beyond that, Chicago’s depth at LG is questionable.

It wouldn’t be a surprise to see the Bears draft another guard, or potentially add another veteran via free agency.

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