Could The Chicago Bears Give Jay Cutler A Contract Extension Before Matt Forte?

The Chicago Bears are a team loaded with veteran talent, and they are making a push towards the Super Bowl right now, but don't think general manager Phil Emery is neglecting the future. Jay Cutler, Michael Bush, Brandon Marshall, Matt Forte, Julius Peppers, Brian Urlacher, Lance Briggs and Charles Tillman are all close enough to their primes right now to pursue a Super Bowl in the short-term, but the franchise needs to starting thinking about how to allocate their money going forward as well.

Running back Matt Forte has been absent during the team's OTAs due to a contract dispute, but David Haugh of the Chicago Tribuune says he wouldn't be shocked if the Bears lock up Jay Cutler to a long-term extension before addressing Forte's demands.

The Bears control Forte's rights under the Franchise Tag -- a collectively bargained tool available to the team for two seasons -- and running backs are typically a poor investment over the long-term in the NFL, but Cutler is just 29 years old and has two years remaining on the five-year, $50 million extension he signed with the Bears back in 2009. If Emery could lock up his franchise quarterback on an even longer deal now, Haugh argues the team would be spending their money wisely and controlling their salary cap situation by creating stability at the game's most important position going forward.

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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