PHILADELPHIA, PA - NOVEMBER 07: Matt Forte #22 of the Chicago Bears runs the ball against Brian Rolle #59 of the Philadelphia Eagles during a game at Lincoln Financial Field on November 7, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

Bears Offseason 2012: Chicago Extends RB Matt Forte On 4-Year Deal

With a new GM in Phil Emery, the Bears have re-signed RB Matt Forte and LB Lance Briggs, as well as traded for WR Brandon Marshall and signed RB Michael Bush and QB Jason Campbell.

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Matt Forte Contract Update: Forte, Bears Agree To Four-Year Contract

Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte had until 3 p.m. today to sign a long-term deal and avoid playing the 2012 season under the franchise tag. That deadline, according to various reports, has been met. Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times reported on Monday morning that Forte and the Bears agreed to a four-year contract, with ESPN's Adam Schefter adding that the deal is expected to be worth $8 million a year.

The amount of guaranteed money in the deal has yet to be revealed, though. According to earlier reports, Forte was seeking $20 million in guaranteed money, while the Bears were offering something closer to $15 million guaranteed over the lifetime of the deal.

Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Bears, be sure to visit Windy City Gridiron. And drop by SB Nation's NFL news hub for more updates and commentary from around the league.


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Matt Forte Contract Update: Chicago RB Will Reportedly Only Sign Long-Term Deal

It appears as if the standoff between Matt Forte and the Chicago Bears is only getting started. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, as reported on Sportscenter and relayed by Pro Football Talk, Forte is refusing to sign any contract offer that isn't a long-term deal, and that includes the $7.7 million franchise tag tendered to him by the Bears this off-season.

That means that Forte is almost certainly going to miss the team's voluntary offseason workouts, which begin this coming Monday, and he may miss Chicago's mandatory June minicamp and possibly even some games into the season depending on how serious both sides are in sticking to their guns. Forte has famously been pleading for a long-term deal for much of the past year and change, and though the Bears say that they have made him a long-term offer, the details of that offer have not been disclosed to the public, and obviously Forte has yet to agree to the terms.

The longer that Forte holds out, the bigger the spotlight will get on free agent acquisition Michael Bush, who was jokingly nicknamed by many as the "Matt Forte Insurance Policy." But as the negotiations between Forte and the Bears trudge along, that moniker will get more and more serious.

Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Bears be sure to visit Windy City Gridiron. And drop by SB Nation NFL for more news and notes from around the league.


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Matt Forte Contract Dispute: Bears Running Back Expected To Miss OTAs

The Chicago Bears continue to work around their ongoing contract dispute with All-Pro RB Matt Forte. According to Peggy Kusinski of NBC, Chicago anticipate the fifth-year running back will miss the beginning of organized team activities next Monday:

Forte has played all four years of his NFL career with the Chicago Bears. With the conclusion of his rookie contract in 2011, Forte began campaigning for a long-term, top-tier extension, but negotiations have since stalled. The team tendered Forte a franchise player contract, but Forte has yet to sign the deal.

Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Bears be sure to visit Windy City Gridiron. And drop by SB Nation NFL for more news and notes from around the league.

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2012 NFL Free Agency: RB Michael Bush To Visit Bears On Wednesday

According to Brad Biggs of The Chicago Tribune, free agent RB Michael Bush will meet with the Chicago Bears on Wednesday. Bush has played his entire career with the Oakland Raiders, amassing 2642 yards in four seasons, averaging 4.2 yards per carry and is a free agent for the first time in his career.

In 2011, Bush filled in for an injured RB Darren McFadden and ran for a career-high 977 yards while averaging a career-low 3.8 yards per carry. Bush, who turns 28 in June, would presumably represent a long-term backup plan in the case that the Bears are unable to sign RB Matt Forte to an extension.

Bush also proved to be an effective pass-catcher out of the backfield, catching 37 passes in 2011 for 418 yards and a touchdown.

Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Bears be sure to visit Windy City Gridiron. And drop by SB Nation NFL for more news and notes around the league.

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Chicago Bears Offseason: OC Mike Tice To Interview Tuesday For Oakland Raider HC Job

The Chicago Bears have more than just their own hirings to worry about this offseason as the Oakland Raiders prepare to interview recently-promoted offensive coordinator Mike Tice for their open head coach position. According to Steve Corkran of the Oakland Tribuen, Tice will interview for the Raiders head coach job on Tuesday.

Tice spent the 2011 NFL Season as the Bears' offensive line coach, but the Bears appointed him their offensive coordinator after the previous play-caller, Mike Martz, quit the team and retired suddenly. A veteran of 15 NFL seasons, Tice has been coaching in the NFL since 1996, serving as the head coach of the Minnesota Vikings from 2002 through 2005.


Related: Bears Could Target Two Coaches With Ties To Jay Cutler

The Bears have a variety of different hirings to take care of this offseason, most notably that of their vacant GM position. Chicago is also looking for a passing coordinator to work alongside Tice, whose role will be as the offensive coordinator, yet focused on the running game.

Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Bears be sure to visit Windy City Gridiron. And drop by SB Nation NFL for more news and notes around the league.

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Mike Tice Promoted To Offensive Coordinator, According To Report

Mike Tice has been promoted to the Chicago Bears Offensive Coordinator position, FoxSports.com's Jay Glazer reported Friday via Twitter. The move comes just three days after Mike Martz resigned as the Bears' OC because of philosophical differences between Martz and head coach Lovie Smith.


Bears Search For General Manger Continues


According to Glazer:

"(Tice is) in charge of run game and pairing him with a passing game coach."

Glazer continues.

"Bears want more of a ground-based attack, which makes sense with their personnel."

The personnel that Glazer is talking about is of course running back Matt Forte, who still needs to be resigned by the Bears.

During his 15-year career as an NFL coach, Tice has never served as an offensive coordinator. However, Tice has served under other very successful offensive coordinators like Brian Billick (1996-98).

Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Bears be sure to visit Windy City Gridiron. Visit SB Nation NFL for more news and notes around the league.

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Mike Martz Resigns: Chicago Bears Offensive Coordinator Quits Over Philosophical Differences

According to Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Bears offensive coordinator Mike Martz has resigned, citing philosophical differences.

Martz had been the offensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears since 2010, leading the team to 21st overall ranking (according to points scored) in 2010 and a 17th ranking in 2011. Before the Bears' starting QB Jay Cutler went down with an injury midseason, the team was 7th best at points scored.

The Martz resignation comes on the heals of the Bears' firing GM Jerry Angelo. According to the team, they will retain the services of head coach Lovie Smith. During the season, Mike Martz had been the subject of several rumors concerning college football head coaching vacancies, but he dismissed them at the time.

Stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Bears be sure to visit Windy City Gridiron. Visit SB Nation NFL for more news and notes around the league.

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