One of the more interesting holdout stories of this off-season has been running back Matt Forte and his situation with the Chicago Bears. The Bears placed the franchise tag on Forte, and he’s been disgruntled and longing for a long-term deal. Now, there have been rumors floating around that a long-term deal could be happening soon.
Forte spoke to ESPNChicago.com, saying, “Me and my agent are talking to the Bears. So talks continue to go on. I’m really optimistic about that part — we continue to talk.” The fact that the two sides are having discussions is a huge step. The Bears seem to think that they have all the leverage, and Forte’s side believes that a holdout might be necessary.
If a long-term deal can’t be agreed on, however, Forte would have the option of playing under the franchise tag, valued at $7.7 million.
As far as sitting out goes, that seems to be a real possibility. “Not playing at all? That actually is an option, but there’s a slight chance of that happening. There’s another option of not being in camp and that stuff. There’s two sides to it,” Forte said. He later said that missing the entire 2012 season would not be a plausible option for him.
Forte remains optimistic, and the two sides are negotiating, which is good news. A long-term deal for Forte could be in the near future.