Bears put low tender on QB Caleb Hanie

While many of the players who have been tagged as restricted free agents are expected to become unrestricted when the labor battle is resolved, Chicago Bears quarterback Caleb Hanie will remain restricted.

Much has been made about a lot of names in what has been a procedural move by NFL teams, but Hanie has only three years of service in the league so he’ll be restricted. The Bears tendered Hanie at the low level, meaning he will earn $1.2 million in 2011, according to Vaughn McClure of the Chicago Tribune.

An undrafted free agent from Colorado State in 2008, the Bears have only the right of first refusal with Hanie.

He’s appeared only briefly in three seasons, but he did relieve in the fourth quarter of the NFC Championship Game loss to the Green Bay Packers. Hanie completed 13 of 20 passes for 153 yards and one touchdown with two interceptions. He sparked the offense, leading two scoring drives, so the belief is he’ll be in position to be the backup for Jay Cutler. But offensive coordinator Mike Martz was non-commital and the Bears may seek an experienced backup again.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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