You read the title right. I am suggesting that the Bears at least consider trading their franchise running back, Matt Forte. The same running back who was on pace to gain close to 2,500 yards from scrimmage and has carried the Bears offense for the better part of four seasons.
Matt Forte likely isn't going to show up to voluntary workouts, as reported by Mark Potash of the Chicago Sun-Times, and while that isn't a huge deal, it's only the beginning. What happens when Forte holds out of training camp or the start of the regular season?
Granted, they have Michael Bush and I'm comfortable with that option. But doesn't it seem pretty counter-productive to keep a player who refuses to sign a franchise tag or a long-term deal that is a supposed "strong offer" according to Ted Phillips, via Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times?
Oh, and did I mention Chicago extended Lance Briggs' contract today? How do you think Matt Forte is going to feel about an aging member of the defense getting extended for another year, while the inking of a long-term deal has eluded him thus far?
On top of all of the drama with Matt Forte's twitter rant after the signing of Michael Bush, it was reported by Adam Schefter of ESPN that Matt Forte “is not signing anything until he has a long-term deal."
Now, do you really think this holdout is going to compel the Bears' front office to go ahead and increase their offer so much that Forte will sign? Didn't think so.
I am pretty sure that at this point, the offer the Bears have given is the offer that will stand and if that is the case, it's better to get something out of trading Forte than to let his contract issue continue being the monumental distraction it has been.
What do you think B/R? What would be the price that would make you at least consider the idea of trading the Bears' beloved Forte?