Defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis chose the Chicago Bears over other suitors for a shot to returning to playing the type of football he became accustomed to over his first three years in the NFL with the New Orleans Saints.

The seventh-overall pick of New Orleans in 2008, Ellis enjoyed moderate success during his first three seasons, but said the team's scheme over the last two years "didn't quite suit my talents." Ellis posted 12 sacks in his first three years, but over the last two, he's contributed only half a sack.

"I believe the first three years went pretty well," Ellis said. "We had some coaching changes and some scheme changes as far as defense. It was kind of a little rotation of defensive coordinators that came in for a little bit. I believe the last two years the schemes that were played didn't quite suit my talents. I think that showed in production."

Projected to play the three-technique spot in Chicago's 4-3 front, Ellis will be used more as a penetrator than a mere run plugger. That small detail made all the difference in Ellis making the decision to sign with the Bears over other teams he visited such as the Detroit Lions and the New England Patriots.

"Yeah, that was part of the reason I picked Chicago. But mainly it was because of the way that I know their defensive line plays. They allow their guys to do what defensive linemen are supposed to do. That's rush the passer, get sacks and put pressure on the quarterback while playing the run on the way. So I'm excited to be a part of a scheme that does that. I haven't had the chance to do that the last couple of years. I'm glad to be back on a team that I know runs a solid (4-3) the way they used to run the (4-3). I'm excited to have a chance to play in a defense like that again."

The Bears plan to plug in Ellis in the rotation behind starter Henry Melton, initially. But there's a chance Ellis could wind up playing the nose tackle position in a pinch. He's played both positions in the past.

Bears coach Marc Trestman likes the depth added to the position with the signing of Ellis, but the coach is also pleased with the fact the new defensive tackle ratchets up the competition along the interior of the defensive line.