Poor no more: Matt Forte signs long-term deal with Chicago
Forte had been making noise that he would hold out of Bears training camp without a deal. He's been playing on a rookie contract that paid him pretty poorly for a Pro Bowler who's averaged more than 1,000 yards rushing and nearly 500 yards receiving in each of his four NFL seasons.
The Chicago Tribune broke the news, and the deal came less than three hours before Forte would have been slapped with the franchise tag. If franchised, Forte would have been paid $7.74 million. Now he'll make around $8 million per season, with $18 million of the contract reportedly guaranteed.
It must have been especially galling for Forte to see his back-ups getting paid vastly higher salaries than him. Last season, Forte made $600,000 while his back-up Marion Barber made a cool $2.5 million. In 2010, Forte made $550,000 while his back-up Chester Taylor got more than $3 million for playing -- plus an additional $4 million for being released.
Forte is the only player in the history of the NFL to record 900 yards rushing and 400 yards receiving in each of his first four seasons.
The Bears open training camp in just ten days, on July 26 in Bourbonnais, IL.