Matt Forte and the Chicago Bears have struck a deal only hours before Monday's deadline for franchise tagged players to sign longterm deals. Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports that the two sides have agreed to a multi-year contract and are finalizing all the details now.
The four-year contract will reportedly average $8 million per year, according to reports. Speculation had centered around a deal averaging $8-9 million per year so that sounds about right.
Forte finished his rookie deal last season at which point the Bears popped the franchise tag on him.
The longterm deal is best for both sides. Forte gets some security with the longterm deal and the Bears get their star running back under contract. Forte is one of the most important pieces of the Bears offense so doing a longterm deal was obviously a priority.
With Forte in the fold, Bears fans can look forward to an offense that has a couple of newcomers, including Michael Bush and Brandon Marshall.
The Bears had until 4 p.m. ET on Monday afternoon to agree to a longterm deal with Forte or else they would have to wait until after the 2012 season.