It sure looked like Derrick Brooks was going to finally get signed by an NFL team this week. With Brian Urlacher and Jerod Mayo going down in week one with injuries, Brooks phone has been ringing more this week than it has all offseason, but still no deals. The fact that a future Hall of Famer who still seemingly has some game left and is a terrific leader is still unsigned while an underachieving diva like Dunta Robinson is getting paid close to eight figures is nauseating.
On Wednesday, Brooks signed a deal with ESPN to appear on a few of their ten million platforms as an NFL analyst. That said, he still hopes to play this season and ESPN is well aware of that. Brooks joined ESPN Radio Chicago to discuss his new deal with the WWL, if he thinks the Bears will eventually sign him, his relationship with Lovie Smith, and his communication with the Patriots.
Derrick, what gives?
“Who knows, it could be one of the shortest tenures ever.”
Are you still working out?
“Yes, I am. We talked about this opportunity here at ESPN a few weeks back and I told them at that time if nothing had happened I would take advantage of this opportunity here until something happens concerning football. So I’m just pursuing these media reps while I wait on my football reps.”
What’s the percentage you could be a Bear?
“I don’t know. I’m going to always say high just out optimism. My understanding and position that they’re in and me knowing the personality of Jerry (Angelo) and Lovie(Smith), they really want to evaluate the guys that are there this weekend to give them an opportunity to step in and fulfill the loss of not having Urlacher in and they are going to take it from there – the evaluation process. I’m just grateful to be considered an option and if that’s the case I will come in and do my best to fill whatever role they need me to fill in order to win.”
What kind of relationship do you have with Lovie?
“Well it went from one extreme to the other. It’s really more around two good buddies man. Lovie came into this league my second year and I think we kind of grew up together, him making me a better player, I’m making him a better coach and those type of relationships you don’t really lose throughout life. That’s the one thing about playing this game of football is bonding and establishing those type of relationships away from the game. Most of our conversations are about family, him wanting to be the best example and role model in this game and likewise I’m trying to follow in those footsteps with my family. And again, advising me on his opinion on my professional career, I consult with him every year, ask him to evaluate my game and see where I’m at. I’ll constantly joke with him don’t leave me on the football field too long, but he always is very honest with me and he still thinks I got some football left in me and it’s obvious he’s very high on me for being an option to play on their football team to help their defense. At this point we just got things on the back burner until we get through this weekend and we’ll go from there.”
On the rumor that the New England Patriots are interested in Derrick Brooks:
“Yeah, it’s multiple teams are out there that are very interested and what I’ll do is take each situation, analyze it, pray over it and move from there. Whatever that opportunity is I’ll look at it. You said it best that multiple teams are doing it and right now what the common denominator is they want to get through this weekend and see what their football team is like and revisit early next week.”