CHICAGO, IL - NOVEMBER 20: Patrick Mannelly #65 of the Chicago Bears lays on the field injured during the game against the San Diego Chargers at Soldier Field on November 20, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)
The Bears have reportedly agreed to terms with 23-year-old Jake Laptad, a rookie long-snapper out of Kansas.
According to the Associate Press, the Chicago have signed defensive end and long snapper Jake Laptad to a three year contract. Laptad initially joined the Bears earlier in 2011 as an undrafted free agent out of Kansas, but was twice released from the practice squad.
Bears fans know the Jay Cutler injury was not the only injury the Bears took in Sunday's win over the San Diego Chargers. They also lost long-time special teams standout Patrick Mannelly to a ruptured ACL during an extra point attempt. Mannelly, who holds the Bears' record for games started, was in the middle of his 14th NFL season after being drafted in the 6th round by Bears in 1998.
Laptad figures to take over the long-snapping duties effective immediately and, given the length of his contract and the fact that Patrick Mannelly will be 37 years old in 2012, may represent the Bears long-snapping solution for the foreseeable future.