Free-agent center Brian de la Puente joined the Chicago Bears on Sunday. Despite being a starter for the last three seasons with the New Orleans Saints, de la Puente didn't draw a ton of interest on the open market, and as a result of this, he only ended up getting a one-year deal from the Bears that is worth the minimum.
Considering the Detroit Lions have a need for an experienced center to back up Dominic Raiola, de la Puente would have made a lot of sense for them. He was never publicly connected to the Lions before he agreed to a deal with the Bears, but the Chicago Tribune's Brad Biggs reports that de la Puente "had an offer to be a backup for the Lions." So it turns out that the Lions did make a run at signing him.
In Chicago, de la Puente is expected to be a backup this year, but he has been reunited with Aaron Kromer, who is the Bears' current offensive coordinator and the Saints' former offensive line coach. Roberto Garza, the Bears' current starting center, is 35 years old, so de la Puente may have his sights set on starting at center next season. He could have had a similar situation in Detroit considering Raiola is also 35, but the familiarity with Kromer seemingly swayed him to sign with Chicago.
At this point, it seems likely that the Lions will draft somebody to serve as Raiola's backup at center this year. Then, in 2015, that draft pick could take over the starting center job depending on what happens with Raiola, who is on a one-year deal.