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Bears introduce first-round pick Carimi

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Dan Parr

dparr@pfwmedia.com
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By Dan Parr

While the lockout is back on, the Bears welcomed one player into their facility Saturday. Chicago's first-round pick, Wisconsin OT Gabe Carimi, met with team officials and was introduced at a press conference Saturday.

"I think this is a great organization and it's really the perfect fit for me," said Carimi, the 29th overall pick. "I wouldn't see myself anywhere else."

The offensive line was considered the Bears' biggest need this year, as Jay Cutler was sacked a league-high 52 times. Carimi, the seventh of eight offensive linemen taken in the first round, is expected to start at tackle from Day One.

"I'm going to play physical," he said. "The O-line here is tough. I'm going to hopefully play with them and we will have a nastiness to our O-line."

Carimi repeatedly said he was the best tackle available in interviews before the draft, and some perceived him to be arrogant and selfish. It might have rubbed some teams the wrong way, but not the Bears. Carimi offered no apologies for his confidence on Saturday.

"What am I going to say?" he said. "That I don't think I'm the best tackle or going to be the best tackle? But I am more than happy. This is exactly where I wanted to be, to be honest with you. If you ask any of my close friends, I told them (when they asked me), where do you fit best in, or where do you think you want to go, I told them that I wanted to be a Bear, probably."

After his meeting with the team Saturday, the Bears will not be allowed to have contact with Carimi until the lockout ends. Eventually, Carimi, could be plugged in at right tackle if J'Marcus Webb, a seventh-round pick last year, moves to play the OLT spot.

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