After a productive first season with the Bears in 2020, veteran defensive end Mario Edwards Jr. on Tuesday agreed to a three-year contract extension.
Edwards originally signed with the Bears last Sept. 8, five days before the team's regular-season opener in Detroit. He appeared in 15 games, all as a reserve, and established career highs with 4.0 sacks and 6.0 tackles-for-loss while also registering 17 tackles and seven quarterback hits. He followed with four solo tackles and two tackles-for-loss in the wild card playoff game in New Orleans.
Edwards joined the Bears after spending his first five NFL seasons with the Raiders (2015-17), Giants (2018) and Saints (2019), appearing in 59 games with 24 starts and recording 93 tackles, 10.5 sacks, 12 tackles-for-loss, 23 quarterback hits and three forced fumbles.
The 6-3, 280-pounder was selected by the Raiders in the second round of the 2015 draft out of Florida State. He played in 14 games with 10 starts as a rookie, registering 42 tackles, 2.0 sacks and 3.0 tackles-for-loss.
After being limited to two games due to injuries in 2016, Edwards started all 14 games he played in 2017, compiling 27 tackles, 3.5 sacks and 4.0 tackles-for-loss. Edwards, who spent his first three NFL seasons teaming with Bears star outside linebacker Khalil Mack in Oakland, was waived by the Raiders as part of final cuts in 2018.
Edwards was claimed the next day by the Giants and appeared in 15 games, all as a reserve, with New York, recording 14 tackles, 2.0 sacks and 3.0 tackles-for-loss. Edwards signed with the Saints in 2019 and played in 14 contests, all as a reserve, and registered eight tackles, 3.0 sacks and 2.0 tackles-for-loss. He was released by New Orleans as part of final cuts last year.
Edwards is the third Bears player who was due to become an unrestricted free agent to agree to a contract extension in the last week, following kicker Cairo Santos and punter Pat O'Donnell.