HOW ACQUIRED: Selected in Stage 1 of the 2017 Re-Entry Draft.
For a player who didn’t know if he’d ever play again following a devastating leg break with England’s Bolton Wanderers during the 2011 preseason, Mears has carved out a cozy home for himself in MLS. After only making 28 appearances in three years, Mears was acquired by Seattle in 2014 and immediately made an impact as a marauding right back and led the team in minutes in 2015. A capable one-on-one defender with the proclivity to push forward to aid the attack, Mears will look to cement his starting place in Minnesota.
INTERNATIONAL: In 2009, Mears made his debut for Jamaica at the age of 26 through what he believed to be family ties. Those ties turned out to be Sierra Leonian, thus barring him from playing for England, the place of his birth, for the rest of his career.
OUTSIDE MLS: Mears came up as a youth player for Manchester City but began his professional career at Preston North End. After 70 appearances, Mears bounced from West Ham to Derby County to a four-game loan stint at Marseilles before landing at Burnley, where he played 82 games from 2009-2011. That earned him a sale to Bolton, then a first division team, before his leg break slowed his career.
NOTES: 2016 MLS Cup-winner.