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Bears terminate contract of Johnny Knox

Posted Feb 12, 2013

The Bears on Tuesday terminated the contract of veteran wide receiver Johnny Knox.

The Bears on Tuesday terminated the contract of veteran wide receiver Johnny Knox.

Knox started 27 of 45 games played in three seasons after joining the Bears in 2009 as a fifth-round draft pick from Abilene-Christian, catching 133 passes for 2,214 yards and 12 touchdowns. His 16.6 yards per reception was seventh best in the NFL during that time.

Johnny Knox represented the Bears in the Pro Bowl in 2009 as the NFC's kickoff return specialist.
"Johnny should be very proud of his accomplishments and what he's done for the city of Chicago and for the Chicago Bears," said general manager Phil Emery. "He did a lot for our fans and a lot for our team. I'm disappointed for him that he won't be able to move forward with the team.

"Johnny will always be a Bear and he will always be welcome here in our practice facility and all of our team events and at games."  

Knox spent the 2012 season on the physically unable to perform list after sustaining a back injury on Dec. 18, 2011 in a loss to the Seattle Seahawks at Soldier Field.

The speedy receiver was injured on a freak play. After fumbling on a 17-yard reception, he turned back toward the line of scrimmage to try to retrieve the ball and was drilled by Anthony Hargrove, a 6-3, 272-pound defensive end who was charging downfield full speed.

Knox's body bent back grotesquely and he remained down on the field for nearly 10 minutes before being removed on a backboard and taken to the hospital, where he underwent surgery.

Knox was drafted by the Bears with a pick they had obtained from the Denver Broncos as part of the trade that landed quarterback Jay Cutler.

Knox was voted to the Pro Bowl as a rookie on special teams, ranking second in the NFL with a 29.0-yard average including a 102-yard touchdown on 32 kickoff returns.

In 2010, he topped the Bears with 960 receiving yards and tied for the team lead with 51 receptions and five touchdown catches. Knox led the Bears again with 727 receiving yards in 2011 despite missing the final two games following his injury, and he ranked second in the NFL with an average of 19.6 yards per reception.

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