Blog Entry

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

Posted on: November 2, 2011 9:48 am
Edited on: November 2, 2011 2:31 pm
Posted by Will Brinson

Bears running back Matt Forte might very well be the most underpaid player in professional football. Forte's averaging 96 rushing yards a game behind a Swiss (cheese) built offensive line, he's averaging 59.9 receiving yards a game, he leads the NFL in yards from scrimmage with 1,091 and he accounts for over 40 percent of Chicago's offensive yardage produced.

Yet the Bears refuse to pay him. Or even talk about paying him. And may just end up using their franchise tag on him. All of which is starting to grind Forte's gears.

"The running back position is the most physically demanding on the field," Forte said Tuesday, per the Chicago Sun-Times. "Everyone acknowledges that. So to continue to give me the touches I’ve had since my rookie year but not award me a long-term contract sends the message that you’re OK grinding me into a pulp."

Look, the Bears and Forte are in a weird situation. He's blowing up this season and he probably deserves to get paid. And the Bears desperately need him on their roster.

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But if you're Chicago, and you're watching what happened with Chris Johnson and the Titans this season, how can you reasonably carve out a chunk of your payroll to give Forte a big-time deal when you don't have to? Especially since the franchise tag will be available after this season, even if it's something that won't make Forte too happy.

"If they think by just slapping the franchise tag on me that’s going to silence anything, they’re sadly mistaken," he said. "That’s not going to cure everything. It’s not a solution, I would say."

Reading between the lines, it's not implausible to think Forte might consider holding out if the Bears apply the franchise tag to him. It's reasonable for him to be upset, because he'll turn 27 in December and 28 the December after that, which means he wouldn't see his first non-rookie guaranteed contract until he was 29, should the Bears only franchise him once.

It's a legitimate quandary and although Forte's incredibly valuable to Chicago -- and the primary reason they've had any offensive success whatsoever -- his value takes a serious hit if the running back's contract takes up a substantially bigger portion of Chicago's payroll.

And if he's ground to a pulp, well, he doesn't do them much good at all.

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Since: Aug 1, 2009
Posted on: November 2, 2011 11:41 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

FORTE shut up alerady, tired of hearing this guy speak every week on his shitty contract that HE SIGNED, dont sign it if you dont
like it, not that hard , and i would play any day any position for 400k still!

Since: Nov 20, 2009
Posted on: November 2, 2011 11:16 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

If i remember correctly, Forte is making about 400k this year.  Peanuts for his value....

Since: Oct 15, 2011
Posted on: November 2, 2011 11:15 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

Forte signed the standard 2nd round rookie RB contract.  At the time it was a good deal straight out of college.  Holding out as a rookie would have only made enemies of fans and stunted his growth as a running back.   Given the Bears past, this would have been the worst decision. 

The franchise tag is there for just this case, and that is what all of the players agreed on.  Forte will be franchised by the Bears, but he will also get paid very well.  The only thing he wont have is long-term security.  I wish the Bears would pay him, but I understand why they wont.
 Too bad all posters here aren't required to take an intro to business law course, but then again, that would just kill the entertainment value.

Since: Nov 23, 2008
Posted on: November 2, 2011 11:04 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

Nice rticle - however nowwhere does it say what his salry is so how do I really know he is underpaid?

Since: Aug 8, 2008
Posted on: November 2, 2011 11:01 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

Perhaps he should have done one of two things:
1) Voiced his problems with the franchise tag while his Players Union was negotiating a new agreement
2) Not signed a long term contract with the Bears so he'd have other options available to him sooner
He signed a contract that he thought was good. Looks like he should have held out for more money BEFORE he signed a contract. Too bad NFL players aren't required to take an Intro to Business Law course.   

Since: Feb 5, 2009
Posted on: November 2, 2011 10:55 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

Forte needs to just shut up and play.  I definitely think he deserves to be paid, but his history might say otherwise.  In his rookie year he had 300 carries, gained 1200 yards.  His 2d year he had a hammy that affected his explosiveness and productivity.  Last year he came around the 2nd half to gain 1000 yard.  This year he's a monster, but this if the first year he's really at the elite level.  Certainly he has been a workhorse in the 3 years prior in terms of percentage of the offense, but his stats aren't eye popping.  He hasn't rushed for 1500 yards, something DeAngelo Williams, Chris Johnson and AP have all done.  He catches better than those guys, but still.  The Bears offered $14 million guaranteed before the season and he declined.  His right.  Now he's worth more, but I can't believe that his yapping is getting him any closer to a long term deal.  He should just shut up and kick ass.  Once Cutler underachieves and the Bears offense is mediocre they'll realize Forte is worth the money and, if they're smart, pay him.  If not they'll franchise him and the ball will be back in his court.  Problem is RB is the most physically punishing offensive position, but this is QB league and productive RBs are a dime a dozen.  

Since: Feb 24, 2010
Posted on: November 2, 2011 10:09 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

Especially if that paper bag were wet.

Since: Nov 2, 2011
Posted on: November 2, 2011 9:29 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

Just pay the guy already.  If the Bears don't have Forte, the Bears lose.  It's as simple as that.  Marion Barber couldn't run his way out of a paper bag.

Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: November 2, 2011 8:31 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

And why would the Bears trade him?  Because hes not happy?  That works for guys like Chris Harris not Forte.  I repeat.  He will get paid and go into next season a happy rich man who will hopefully still produce.

Since: Apr 22, 2008
Posted on: November 2, 2011 7:53 pm

Matt Forte: Bears are 'grinding me to a pulp'

All Day recieved a 100 million dollar contract.
He is on pace for 20 tds and 1600 yards this season.
Yet, the Vikings are 2-6.

The NFL is a QB league. With Mannign the Colts are a playoff team without him they are a joke.
The Bears wont pay Forte and he will hold out. He will probably end up being traded.

Teams should pay a crazy amount for QB, LT, DLine and maybe a ridiculously good cover corner or WR.
There are not many WR that warrent a lot of cash.
I mean Calvin Johnson is a difference maker and is worth a ton but not many are worth a huge huge contracts.

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