ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that the Bears will franchise tag Matt Forte if the two sides can't come to an agreement over Forte's contract extension.
On "Rome is Burning", Forte said:
"That's not something I'm looking forward to...I don't want a one-year deal. I want a long-term extension. I think if they use the franchise tag that's kind of a cheap way to go out. That's not what I'm looking forward to. I want a long-term extension. I've been drafted by Chicago. I want to stay there so it's not something I'm looking forward to."
Who can blame Forte on not wanting to be franchised? The average career for a running back is shorter than other positions because of the amount of punishment they take Forte wants his money now.
At the same time, the Bears have every right to franchise tag Forte and they can franchise him twice. The Bears can franchise him next season and the following season. By the time Forte can get a contract extension, he will be an older player and moving closer to the twilight of his career.
Regardless of who's side you're on, Forte will get paid. It's just a matter of when.
Forte is the most valuable player on the Bears and is an early MVP candidate. He is currently the NFL's yards from scrimmage (1,091). Forte is on pace to finish the season with 2,493 yards from scrimmage which would be second most in NFL history.