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Bears reach one-year deal with former ND star, Colts safety Zbikowski

Published: Saturday, March 23, 2013 4:44 p.m. CDT • Updated: Monday, March 25, 2013 8:16 a.m. CDT
Former Notre Dame star and Buffalo Grove native Tom Zbikowski will return to Chicago after agreeing to a one-year contract with the Bears on Saturday. (Associated Press photo)

Last week, Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano told reporters he believes Tom Zbikowski still has a future in the NFL.

The Bears are hoping that's the case.

The Bears agreed to a one-year contact with the 27-year-old safety Saturday. The Buffalo Grove native and former Notre Dame star spent last year with the Colts after playing in Baltimore.

Zbikowski started 11 games for Indianapolis last year before missing the remainder of the year with a knee injury. He finished the year with a career-high 38 tackles and five passes defended in his first year as a starter.

The Colts released Zbikowski, opening the door for the Bears, who already have starting safeties in Chris Conte and Major Wright. Zbikowski will likely factor in as a third option at the position and on special teams.

But his former coach believes Zbikowski can still play.

“Tommy still has a future in the league,” Pagano told reporters last week. “Unfortunately he got hurt. When he came back, I don’t know if he was 100 percent. There is gas left in the tank.

"I know Tommy’s mindset. I know what a competitor he is. All he needs is an opportunity. I know somebody will give him one and he’ll make the best of it.”

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