As the Bears prepare to take on the 49ers on Thursday night, linebacker Lance Briggs is talking about the aborted deals that left him on the verge of going to San Francisco, only to end up staying in Chicago.
Those aborted deals also left the 49ers getting punished by the NFL for tampering.
Briggs told reporters today that he fully expected to become a 49er, either through a trade or through free agency, and he was surprised that things turned out with him remaining in Chicago. He accused the 49ers of making him think he’d be going to San Francisco and then “pulling out on me at the last minute.”
“Like I said, the 49ers was the team that I believed I was going to be going to,” Briggs said, per Matt Barrows of The Sacramento Bee. “And I think a lot of people around the league figured that’s the team I was going to go to. And I got a call from my agent right before free agency, saying it’s probably not going to happen and that we’re going to have to go elsewhere.”
Briggs said he doesn’t know the details of the tampering case, which cost the 49ers a fifth-round draft pick and forced San Francisco to exchange third-round picks with Chicago. He just knows he was taken by surprise when things didn’t work out between himself and the 49ers.
But Briggs said that heading into his game with the 49ers, he’s not using those past dealings with the team as motivation.
“I don’t hold grudges,” he said. “I was a little upset at the time, but all in all I’m happy with how things worked out.”