Chicago Bears running back, Matt Forte, is asking for a contract extension that would put him among the top ten highest paid backs. But does he really deserve it?

The Bears selected Forte, out of Tulane, in the second round of the 2008 draft. Forte immediately grabbed the starting job when the Bears parted ways with troubled running back, Cedric Benson. As a first year starter, Forte impressed everyone around the Bears organization by leading the team in total yards. But was his rookie season overrated? Did Fantasy Football make him look like a better running back?

Forte was ranked in the top five of fantasy running backs in the 2008/2009 season. However, the fantasy stats make Forte seem like a better runner than he actually is. Forte received many fantasy points for his receiving yards. The points gained by receiving yards made him look like a great running back. However, in his rookie season, Forte averaged just 3.9 yards a carry. Not bad, but nothing special compared to other elite backs. Just an average yards per carry for Forte.

Then in the 2009/2010 season. Forte’s numbers dropped. With a new quarterback and a better passing attack, Forte did not improve. Slowed down by injury, Forte lost some speed and ability. Again Forte had just an average rushing season with just 3.6 yards per carry.

In his third season with the Bears, Forte made some improvements. His average yard per carry jumped up to 4.5 yards per carry. However, it is important to remember that his stats were boosted by big games against terrible teams. Versus the league’s worst, Carolina Panthers, Forte rushed for 166 on 22 carries(7.5avg). Forte also had six games when he averaged less than three yards a carry and 9games with an average under 4 yards a carry.

Compared to the elite running backs’ talent, Forte is just a “good” back. Forte does not have a “run you over” power like Adrian Peterson,  breakaway speed like Chris Johnson or Jamaal Charles, or the ability to make defenders miss like the rest of the great running backs in the league. So why should Forte be paid like a top running back?

Let Forte prove this year that he is a top notch back before the Bears offer him a top of the line contract. 

6 thoughts on “Does Matt Forte Deserve a Big Contract?”

  1. I think he deserves it. Our organization has the money to make it happen and is just being cheap.

    It isn’t that Forte isn’t a top back, top 10 is enough for me. Forte isn’t demanding to be paid like the top backs despite having him name thrown around in the mix with them. He is still on a rookie deal, if I am correct last season Chester Taylor made 5x what Forte made. That is why he deserves a new deal.

  2. Prove it is right Chris. He is average at best. Just read the stats and you can tell. Seriously Bears fans, just look at the facts and see. Chris is DEAD ON. I am a die-hard Bears fan but also realistic. I want to see Forte prove his worth.

  3. I think some people are confusing the term elite back with elite talent. Talent wise, you point out that he isn’t as fast or elusive as CJ/Charles however, production wise…Forte is elite. Talent wise, he isn’t elite.

  4. Production is not elite. Just over 1,000 yards twice. Thats what a running back should have. He scored 4rushing touchdowns last year. That is not elite. 3games of 100 yards. That is not elite.

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