Bears running back Matt Forte just announced that Chicago will not re-sign him when he becomes a free agent this offseason and already rumors are circulating that teams are lining up to sign him.
Forte posted the news to his Instagram page and captioned a pic of himself walking out of the tunnel before the start of a game with the sad news.
“Despite my wishes, my days as a member of the Chicago Bears have sadly come to an end,” Matt started off his post with. “My only regret is not being able to win a Lombardi trophy for the best fans in all of sports. I’m excited about the next chapter of my NFL career. But, Chicago will always be home. God Bless and Bear Down!”
Despite my wishes, my days as a member of the Chicago Bears have sadly come to an end. I was informed earlier this week from the GM that they will not be attempting to re-sign me in free agency. I will remain forever grateful for my time spent in Chicago and being able to play for an organization with such a rich history. My only regret is not being able to win a Lombardi trophy for the best fans in all of sports. I'm excited about the next chapter of my NFL career. But, Chicago will always be home. God Bless and Bear Down!
That next chapter for the 30-year old back could be with Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. Not only is Forte still a productive and reliable pass catcher out of the backfield even though his days of being a number one back are over, ESPN suggests, it could help light a fire under troubled running back Eddie Lacy who was overweight last season.
“They have already tried to light a fire under Eddie Lacy for being out of shape and overweight last season. Plus, Lacy’s backup, James Starks, turns 30 later this month, fumbled way too much last season and is scheduled to become a free agent. It’s rare for GM Ted Thompson to sign free agents, but he signed pass-rusher Julius Peppers after the Bears cut him in 2014.”
As reported by NBC Sports, Packers coach Mike McCarthy has talked openly that he thinks Eddie Lacy needs to lose weight if he hopes to stick with the team in the foreseeable future.
“Eddie’s got a lot of work to do,” McCarthy said. “I’m stating the obvious. His offseason last year was not what it should be and he never recovered from it. He cannot play at the weight he did this year.”
After breaking out in his rookie season, Lacy suffered career lows in all major categories during his sophomore campaign. Bringing in a running back like Matt Forte, who has been both durable and productive in his eight seasons to date, could provide the competition and veteran leadership Lacy needs to take it the next level.
Even with playing in a great city like Chicago, Matt Forte still was one of the most-productive, least-recognized standouts in the NFL.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 12, 2016
Of course, the Packers are going to have competition for Forte’s services. As reported by Inquisitr, both the Dallas Cowboys and New England Patriots could be in the running to sign Matt. Tom Brady could definitely use another weapon, as evidenced by the lack of firepower around him during the Patriots loss to the Broncos this year. And Bill Belichick has a history of grabbing aged running backs off the scrap heap and turning them into productive players the second half of their careers.
In fact, CBS Sports thinks Matt Forte moving to the New England Patriots makes the most sense out of all his possible destinations.
“Assuming Forte still has some juice left in the tank, he is big enough to run between the tackles and has some of the best hands of any running back in the league, which could keep him on the field for all three downs for the Patriots. Most importantly, Forte would be a legitimate threat to make big plays every time he touches the ball, something the Patriots haven’t had at the running back position in some time.”
Where do you think Matt Forte will land, the Green Bay Packers or the New England Patriots?
[Photo by David Banks/Getty Images]