Here’s the press release as issued by the Chicago Bears. Notice how they credit Garza for helping to “pave the way” for Matt Forte. The deal, however, was well-deserved and a long time coming:
LAKE FOREST, IL — The Chicago Bears signed C/G Roberto Garza to a two-year contract extension. Garza’s new contract runs through the 2013 season.
Garza has appeared in 102 contests for the Bears in seven seasons (2005-11) including 93 starts along the offensive line (76 at right guard, nine at left guard and eight at center). One of the Bears’ 2011 offensive captains, Garza has started all eight contests this season at center, helping pave way for RB Matt Forté, who is second in the NFL with 805 rushing yards.
For his NFL career, Garza has started 124 of 153 contests with the Bears and Falcons (2001-04) after being selected by Atlanta in the fifth round (99th overall) of the 2001 NFL Draft. He was acquired by the Bears in 2005 as an unrestricted free agent.
Since 2004, Garza has started 108 of 118 games played with Atlanta and Chicago helping his team to a 68-40 (.630) record in those starts and paving way for a 1,000-yard rusher in five of those seasons, with Forté on pace to break 1,000 yards rushing in 2011.