It would be Lewis’ 18th NFL season, which would break a tie with Jason Witten and Tony Gonzalez for the most ever played at the position. Lewis, 39, has played in 251 career games, which ranks fifth among active players and 52nd all-time.
The veteran spent the past five seasons with the Green Bay Packers, for whom he caught 57 passes for 582 yards and six touchdowns. He caught only six passes for 66 yards and two touchdowns last season, but proved his worth as an effective blocker.
Lewis and Bears offensive coordinator Luke Getsy spent three seasons together in Green Bay (2019-21), where the former served as quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator.
Earlier this offseason, New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers had mentioned his former tight end as “a guy I want to finish my career with” and raved about Lewis’ leadership skills while in Green Bay.
Patrick shared his excitement over the signing with a post on X, formerly Twitter: “BIG DOG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Lewis joins a tight end room in Chicago headlined by Cole Kmet and Tonyan.
Lewis spent his first 12 seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars after being drafted with the 28th overall pick in 2006. He has 432 career receptions for 5,084 yards and 39 touchdowns. He made the Pro Bowl in 2010.
This is the second free agent signing in 24 hours for the Bears after Chicago inked defensive end Yannick Ngakoue to a one-year, $10.5 million contract Thursday night. The Bears had an estimated $28 million in salary cap space before the two signings, which was the most in the NFL.