The Bears still hope to have long-snapper Patrick Mannelly back for a club-record 17th season, but if his surgical hip doesn't come around in time they have insurance.
On Monday 10-year Canadian Football League veteran long-snapper Chad Rempel agreed to terms on a three-year deal.
The 31-year-old Rempel played two years under Bears coach Marc Trestman (2008, '09), when Trestman was the Montreal Alouettes head coach. Rempel also played wide receiver in the CFL. He had career totals of 70 special teams tackles, 2 fumble recoveries and 22 receptions for 283 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Mannelly, who will be 39 later this month, has been a model of consistency while playing in a Bears-record 245 games. He will be honored on Tuesday as the Bears' recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award. The award, which is voted on by teammates, is given annually to one player on each NFL team for acting as a role model and exhibiting sportsmanship and courage.
Long-snapper Brandon Hartson, who spent time with the Bears last summer, is also on the roster.