Matt Forte Contract: Bears Making 'Considerable Progress' On 5-Year Deal

Contract negotiations between running back Matt Forte and the Chicago Bears may have seemed contentious and unproductive earlier in the NFL off-season, but there are serious signs that Forte and the Bears are making "considerable progress" on a new five-year deal. Back on July 2, Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports characterized talks between the two sides as "fruitless" and called the chances of reaching an extension "weak," but he has drastically changed his tune for his July 12 column.

With the deadline approaching, La Canfora says a five-year deal is taking shape, but the structure of the first three years is still at issue:

League sources said there has been considerable progress between the Bears and Matt Forte as well. There are still issues to hash out regarding the average per year on the deal over the first three years, and how it could compare to say Marshawn Lynch's new deal, but there has been movement on what the deal might look like over five years.

La Canfora's new found optimism pairs well with Chris Mortensen's prediction that the Bears and Forte reach a deal before the July 16 deadline.

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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