Brian Urlacher could have remained with the Chicago Bears had the front office handled his contract situation differently, the future Hall of Famer says in an interview set to air Sept. 14, ESPN Chicago reports. He told "In Depth With Graham Bensinger" that the Bears' hard-nosed negotiating tactics removed any possibility of him remaining in Chicago.
Specifically, the lack of financial transparency angered Urlacher when he was told to accept a one-year, $2 million deal prior to the season, with the organization apparently failing to properly communicate its plans.
"They knew they weren't gonna move off of that offer. I just wish they'd have told me that," said Urlacher, now an analyst for Fox Sports 1. "I wish they would've said, 'Hey, we have this amount of money for you. This is all we can pay you. If you want to play, we want you back. We want you to play for us.'"
Urlacher did not meet with any teams following his release, eventually retiring prior to the start of the season. He indicates in the interview that he didn't have any desire to rent an apartment in a new city after being released by his only NFL employer.
"I honestly didn't want to play for anyone but the Bears. I can't picture me traveling, go(ing) and renting a place, staying there for six months, then being done. I didn't want to do something like that. It's too hard on my kids to travel. So I didn't want to play for anyone but the Bears."
The Bears drafted Jon Bostic in the second round of the 2013 draft. The middle linebacker out of Florida is viewed as the future at the position and had an impressive preseason where he finished with 13 tackles and an interception returned for a touchdown.