Credit to MathB who brought this to our attention:
The Bears on Wednesday traded Safety Kevin Payne to the St. Louis Rams in exchange for an undisclosed 2011 draft pick. Not sure what this means about the Atogwe situation, but Atogwe is a Free Safety and James Butler is the Strong Safety. Two different jobs.
Payne was a 2007 5th round draft pick who started for the Bears in his second year. He lead the team in interceptions that year.
Payne became expendable when the Bears reacquired veteran safety Chris Harris Tuesday in a trade with the Carolina Panthers. Ironically, Payne was switched from running back to safety at Louisiana-Monroe in 2005 to replace Harris, who had been drafted by the Bears
(Note from 3k: Kevin Payne made sure Bears fans heard the news...by posting it in a FanShot over at Windy City Gridiron, SBN's community for the Bears. Here's to hoping he stops by TST to holler at us!)
[Note by VanRam, 04/28/10 9:46 PM EDT ] This is a great move. Payne is a young up and comer who nabbed 4 INTs in 2008. Like I said earlier today, Spags has a solid track record with defensive backs. According the people at Windy City Gridiron, Payne's strength is at strong safety, but he does have experience at the free safety position. I thought James Butler was steady, but Payne looks like he could be an upgrade is he can edge Butler with his coverage skills, i.e. the Rams problem with tight ends last year. Payne enters 2010 as the favorite for the third safety spot.
Great move the Rams are adding some real talent to their backfield, putting together a solid unit.
Word is that the Rams still want to get a deal done with FS Oshiomogho Atogwe, and that they may just give him the $7 million for one season as a RFA.
More on the Rams secondary recently: