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Buccaneers to sign free-agent defensive lineman Akiem Hicks

Dec 20, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Bears defensive end Akiem Hicks (96) reacts after sacking Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (not pictured) during the second half at Soldier Field. The Minnesota Vikings won 17-9. Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports

Former Chicago Bears defensive lineman Akiem Hicks and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers agreed on a one-year deal that could be worth up to $10 million according to multiple reports Tuesday.

Hicks is set to join a defensive line that includes 2021 Pro Bowl selection Vita Vea and Logan Hall, the 33rd overall pick of the 2022 NFL Draft. His signing likely means the Buccaneers will not re-sign free agent Ndamukong Suh.

Hicks, 32, was a third-round pick of the New Orleans Saints in 2012. He spent his first three seasons with New Orleans, split the 2015 campaign between the Saints and New England Patriots, then signed as a free agent with Chicago before the 2016 season.

In his six years with the Bears, Hicks started 77 games and was credited with 31 sacks, including 3.5 in nine games last season when he dealt with COVID-19 and ankle and groin injuries. In 138 career games (110 starts), Hicks has 40.5 sacks, 387 tackles (73 for loss), six forced fumbles and six fumble recoveries.

–Field Level Media