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Forte says he’ll play when he’s 100 percent

Matt Forte AP

Bears running back Matt Forte has a sprained MCL.  It’s reportedly a Grade 2 tear, which will knock him out for as few as two weeks, and as many as six.

Regardless of the duration of his absence, Forte says he won’t return until he’s 100 percent.

“I’m just treating it, just like any other injury.  I’m going to wait until I get 100 percent out there, because I don’t want to hurt myself,” Forte told Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times.  “And me not being a 100 percent, I’m going to hurt he team as well, because I cant do what I’m supposed to do.”

Forte told Jensen that the tailback has received a platelet-rich plasma injection, in the hopes of speeding the healing process.  Ultimately, he’s balancing a desire to get back on the field against protecting his health.

“I’m not saying I’m holding out, but I’m also not saying I’m going to try to go out there tomorrow and try to run,” Forte said.

Asked whether he’ll be back this season, Forte said, “I have no idea.”

His contract has been an issue throughout the 2011 season.  It expires in March, and the Bears are expected to apply the franchise tag, if a long-term deal can’t be negotiated.  Now that Forte is injured, some wonder whether he’ll milk the situation until the Bears sign him to a new contract.  Others believe he should.

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84 Responses to “Forte says he’ll play when he’s 100 percent”
  1. jbythebay says: Dec 6, 2011 11:06 PM

    Basically he’s telling the Bears to go make love to themselves

  2. 13fitzj says: Dec 6, 2011 11:10 PM

    Well, he’s out for the year…

  3. sfkforever says: Dec 6, 2011 11:13 PM

    in other words…he will not be back

  4. dadeyemi says: Dec 6, 2011 11:14 PM

    honestly, i say stick it to the GM and others who are only offering you a lowly $14m guaranteed. stay off the field until you are 100% healthy.
    why the hell should you try to get back early when your team management couldn’t give a damn about compensating you based on your worth

    lets see how far Chi-town makes it without Forte AND cutler

  5. Wisconsin77 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:18 PM

    I actually back Forte 100 % on this. It is a risk a team plays when they want to play the contract game.

  6. richieab says: Dec 6, 2011 11:21 PM

    why say milk? this man who has given 100 percent with no contract

  7. rogerbrad says: Dec 6, 2011 11:23 PM

    Take care of yourself Forte. I’m a Texans fan so you understand we’ve seen the injuries this year. Do yourself a favor and wait until it’s good before coming back. Best of luck to ya man.

  8. sfm073 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:24 PM

    I would milk it if I was him. He’s proven he’s an elite rb and he should be paid like one.

  9. blountforce says: Dec 6, 2011 11:25 PM

    In other words, i won’t be back til i get paid….. as he should.

  10. thejuddstir says: Dec 6, 2011 11:27 PM

    I’m not a Bears fan but if I were him I’d sit out until next year. Bear’s mgmt has shown that they have no allegiance to Forte so why should he risk his future for them.

  11. transam7816 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:29 PM

    He should sit out and show the team how much he’s really worth.

  12. sundayisthebestday says: Dec 6, 2011 11:29 PM

    Jerry Angelo should’ve paid the man. If Forte had gotten the contract he deserved, he might be a little more motivated to get back for this playoff push. As it stands, he’s not going to rush back and risk further injury without a contract in place for future years.

  13. buffalodiehard says: Dec 6, 2011 11:32 PM

    Oh you want me to come back and save the season? PUT YOUR MONEY WHERE YOUR MOUF IS!!

  14. scoops1 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:35 PM

    Forte….is a smart man

  15. conradantiestablishment says: Dec 6, 2011 11:46 PM

    I’m thinking a new (deserved) contract would clarify what 100 percent means

  16. pdxpanther says: Dec 6, 2011 11:48 PM

    In other words, when these notoriously cheap bastards offer me a legitimate contract.

  17. blacnsilvr says: Dec 6, 2011 11:48 PM

    Memo to the cheap arse bears : When you don’t take care of the player…..the player does not take care of the franchise!!!! Period!!!

  18. profootballwalk says: Dec 6, 2011 11:48 PM

    “I’m not saying I’m holding out,”

    Well yeah, you are.

  19. shaggytoodle says: Dec 6, 2011 11:49 PM

    The Bears got themselves in quite the clustermuck.

    Is Forte insulted by thier lack of trying resign him?

    The Bears want to go out trade for Cutler and lock him up, sign Peppers to big money.

    I can’t believe they didn’t extend thier offensive MVP.

  20. tribeallica says: Dec 6, 2011 11:50 PM

    Sounds like a guy in a contract year. Hey Forte, dont worry, its not like your team is in a battle to make the playoffs and you are already without your QB….

  21. phillydude24 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:51 PM

    “I’m not saying I’m holding out, but I’m also not saying I’m going to try to go out there tomorrow and try to run,” Forte said.

    Last time I checked, If you refuse to do your job you get fired. Its clear as day he will wait until %100 out of spite. Tons of players play at less then %100 every game. But part of me can’t even blame him.

  22. gb4mn0 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:51 PM

    There’s an NFL team 205 miles north of Soldier Field that could find a uniform for Forte to wear.

  23. seattlesuperchronic says: Dec 6, 2011 11:52 PM

    Give him money! Ruskell, you stink!

  24. aaronitout says: Dec 6, 2011 11:55 PM

    Of course he should milk it! Get everything that you can. I sometimes get aggravated at these athletes that hold out because they are giving up millions but then I remember to view the situation in context. If my employer was trying to shortchange me I would definitely do the same thing, if given the opportunity.

    Oh and….

    The Bears still suck!!

  25. darthhitman77 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:56 PM

    As a Lions fan I can honestly say I would LOVE Forte in Detroit and Jerry Angelo is a complete M-O-R-O-N for playing games with this kid. He IS their offense and I for one wouldn’t blame him one bit for “taking my time” coming back. Rule #1 in life: NEVER love something that doesn’t love you in return. Rule #2 Judge the tree by it’s fruits. Jerry Angelo has shown absolutely NO DESIRE to sign him long term and in the process given Forte no reason to rush back other than his love for the game. Angelo will apply the franchise tag next year, and if I were Forte I would bust my butt for a career year THEN, the following year, I would sign for the biggest spender that’s NOT Chicago.

  26. johnnyb216 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:56 PM

    Well, I can see his point. He needs to make sure he stays healthy since the bears didn’t give him a new contract.

  27. coolj23 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:57 PM

    Forte is not the type to take advantage of an injury, but I agree with him he shouldn’t comeback until he’s 100 percent. Especially since he doesn’t have a contract for next year. Why would he risk his career and comeback to soon. He’s a competitor but he ain’t stupid.

  28. highoctane1 says: Dec 6, 2011 11:59 PM

    I get making a business decision about whether to go back out and risk re-injury, but it would be another thing to use a “not 100%” excuse if there was no risk of further injury, regardless of contract situation. I would like to think that Forte will be a pro and know the difference, but then again, he has gone out of his way to talk about his contract at every turn this season. Ray Rice is in the exact same contract situation, and he hasn’t said a word about it all season. If it was Rice that got hurt, nobody would even ask the question.

  29. derekjetersmansion says: Dec 7, 2011 12:00 AM

    Like that SportsCenter commercial with Dwyane Wade.

    “When it’s ready.”

  30. arnoldziffel says: Dec 7, 2011 12:11 AM

    Good Move!

    The tightwad Bears made this kid play under his rookie deal even though he outperformed the contract many times over. If he goes out there now before he’s fully healed, and causes greater damage to the knee, the Bears will simply toss him into the street.

    The next time he suits up, Forte’s contract will be no worse than the 5th highest salary for running backs, under the franchise tag agreement.

    I’m not a Bear fan, but it’s nice to see this guy get his due. Justice is served!

  31. gb15class says: Dec 7, 2011 12:12 AM

    A proud Packer fan, I couldn’t argue with Forte for being cautious. The window for running backs has to be the shortest in sports. I don’t know if his expectations of the Bears has been reasonable, but he won’t get another chance at a significant contract. With the Bears chances fading with both he and Cutler out (too bad, really, no sarcasm), Chicago has had really tough breaks. It doesn’t seem like the Bears have been willing to extend to him

  32. liltmac2003 says: Dec 7, 2011 12:13 AM

    Gotta wish him a quick and healthy recovery. Hopefully he can come back at 100%.

    Always liked Forte, he really was the anchor on the Bears offense.

  33. jaimelh02 says: Dec 7, 2011 12:14 AM

    So Forte is basically saying he’s done for the season. What a selfish prick! #sarcasm

  34. tone360 says: Dec 7, 2011 12:15 AM

    Take care of “Matt and family” the rest is just entertainment. I do love the Bears but put in all in perspective.

  35. drakost says: Dec 7, 2011 12:17 AM

    That was way too close of a call for him. Maybe a wake up call for a few other disgruntled underpaid players. (Well underpaid for the NFL anyway not real world money)

  36. eddieapoc says: Dec 7, 2011 12:19 AM

    No point in risking your future for a team that’s not looking out for you.

    Pay the man.

  37. tinbender2000 says: Dec 7, 2011 12:27 AM

    Can’t blame him one bit. He’s been vocal, but never dogged it on the field. Why should he take a chance with his health while busting his butt for a cheapskate team?

  38. brs027 says: Dec 7, 2011 12:34 AM

    Should have paid the man. Say goodbye.

  39. cliffordc05 says: Dec 7, 2011 12:36 AM

    I don’t believe that not playing with this type of injure until you are 100% is milking it. Is he willing to take an extra risk for a team that has not taken a risk with him: NO and justifiably so.

  40. raiders4life says: Dec 7, 2011 12:37 AM

    If I were Forte, I wouldn’t return to action until I was 110% healthy.

  41. gosuhgo says: Dec 7, 2011 12:40 AM

    I’m sure he’d be back at a little less than 100% if he had a nice contract.

  42. thridandlong says: Dec 7, 2011 12:42 AM

    If he comes back before the Bears show their appreciation for his on field effort with a contract equal to the most productive running back in the NFL, he needs a brain scan too.

    They used and abused him, he should sit the remainder of the season, that should send a message to lame brain Jerry Angelo..

    Fool me once…..

  43. dburgoyne says: Dec 7, 2011 12:46 AM

    I wish him the best and I wouldn’t play without a contract either. On the other hand, my fantasy team is going to die a slow death going into the playoffs now, sigh.

  44. mialto says: Dec 7, 2011 1:00 AM

    Without Cutler and Forte the Bears season is over…2011 will be “what could have been”

  45. caintrain says: Dec 7, 2011 1:14 AM

    Pay the man.

  46. NakedCowboy! says: Dec 7, 2011 1:22 AM

    bears season would be over mathematically as well in 2 weeks… take it easy forte…
    Franchise tag isnt that bad… atleast he will get good $…
    pay the man!

  47. earthtopft says: Dec 7, 2011 1:28 AM

    But he still wouldn’t be ready to give “150%” when he is on the field. Perhaps he should wait past that 100% level for a couple of weeks.

  48. twototoo says: Dec 7, 2011 1:35 AM

    How about injecting platlet rich plasma into Jay Cutler’s thumb, too!

  49. thebigkahuna23 says: Dec 7, 2011 1:44 AM

    He should hang his cleats up for the rest of the regular season, maybe even the playoffs. If the injury was worse Chicago wouldn’t have done jack for him. They deserve it for running him into re ground these past few years and getting for like 600k a year

  50. tednancy says: Dec 7, 2011 1:56 AM

    I think Forte’s getting some crazy stupid advice from his agent. While using the injury as leverage might be the Machiavellian way it is also best done behind the scenes.

    When you come out and publicly say these things you risk alienating your fans and becoming a pariah.

    Up to this point, everyone was on Forte’s side. Now that he’s publicly acknowledged that his top priority ISN’T winning a Championship for his team, he just lost a lot a ton of face.

  51. dotnukem says: Dec 7, 2011 3:08 AM

    Smart man..

  52. redrifle14 says: Dec 7, 2011 3:13 AM

    Ofcourse he should milk it. This is nobody but the stupid GM’s fault. If he wouldve attempted to negociate something, maybe Forte would be more motivated to come back.

  53. santorin4 says: Dec 7, 2011 4:54 AM

    100% paid that is……….good for him. Almost lost ALL of his leverage with an ACL tear.

  54. ezcheese says: Dec 7, 2011 5:20 AM

    Thanks Captain Obvious.

  55. gcsuk says: Dec 7, 2011 5:33 AM

    See you when you aren’t a Bear anymore, Matt.

  56. joeinoh says: Dec 7, 2011 5:37 AM

    I’ve got your back.

    -Peyton Hillis

  57. worldwidebleater says: Dec 7, 2011 5:45 AM

    He’d be an idiot to rush back and risk further injury. He runs the risk of ending his career with no contract in place. Its a business folks. You love your team a lot more than they do.

  58. bucks12965 says: Dec 7, 2011 5:53 AM

    Since he’ll get paid the same lousy amount whether he plays or not…why play?

  59. anhdazman says: Dec 7, 2011 6:00 AM

    Business decision, Forte, be smart. Do not come back until you’re 100%, even if it means next year. Bears organization has shown they’re not that interested in your future services, so you must do what’s best for Matt Forte!

  60. lucky5934 says: Dec 7, 2011 6:00 AM

    I don’t blame him a bit for taking that approach. If he rushes back to the team only to go into free agency with a serious injury, that would cost him millions. The Bears had their chance to lock him up. The chose to play the wait and see approach. So for a team that is going the last month of the season with Caleb Hanie as their quarterback, I don’t see a need to rush back and further damage that knee which would potentially cost him a season of his career.

  61. iced107 says: Dec 7, 2011 6:00 AM

    Don’t risk making the injury worse – why run the risk of threatening your career?

    Not to mention coming back too soon only to be of no use to the team should you only come back for 1 game..

    i’m not even a bears fan, do the smart thing

  62. illmatic8582 says: Dec 7, 2011 6:24 AM

    Could not agree more. I don’t think he should come back until the season is over. No reason to put yourself at risk for that organization. He has showed a lot of maturity to the other teams in the league by playing this year out. DO NOT COME BACK until you have that contract. That could have easily been a career ending knee injury.

  63. staffordsyear says: Dec 7, 2011 6:44 AM

    I’ll im gonna say is forte would be a huge fit in the lions offense..man that would be great.Get well soon and hopefully see ya in dtown someday!

  64. roastbeefsandwich says: Dec 7, 2011 6:46 AM

    Well, they haven’t been willing to give him a contract, and now this will only be used by the Bears to try and pay him less if they actually keep him. Plus considering he would be back without Cutler means the Bears would just grind him to a pulp, so not being 100% would be a huge risk.

  65. righton989 says: Dec 7, 2011 7:13 AM

    2011 Season over. Only two seasons with 1000+ rushing yards. Shelf life nearing the end. Better get the dough soon Matt.

  66. nflfootballjunkie says: Dec 7, 2011 7:41 AM

    Ever heard of a fellow named Wally Pipp, or how about Drew Bledsoe?

  67. trimgod69 says: Dec 7, 2011 7:43 AM

    Pay the Man !!!!!!!!!!

  68. eaglesw00t says: Dec 7, 2011 7:44 AM

    Im behind Forte 100% on this one. Sit the rest of the season out due to “soreness”

    The Bears sure havent done anything to help you. Why should you go out of your way, and possibly risk a serious MCL tear to help a team that hasnt reciprocated and had no plan to?

  69. nflofficeadmin says: Dec 7, 2011 7:55 AM

    If the Bears won’t pay him I bet the Jets will.

  70. packfaninchitown says: Dec 7, 2011 7:57 AM

    “Show Me The M O N E Y!”

    Good for you Matt, you’ve earned it.

  71. neilpountney says: Dec 7, 2011 8:34 AM

    He would be a total idiot if he plays again this season. The Bears all season long have been telling him he is worth less than his statistics and effort show he is, in other words applying business logic to the situation. Now the team themselves will get to have to accept the “business” side of football because they are going to have franchise him or come up with a deal that is vastly higher than what they had on the table before.

    Good for you Matt, you ran hard, you played hard, you gave it your best, now play hard with your contract, after all its nothing personal, it’s a business right Mr Angelo!!!!

  72. tqaztec says: Dec 7, 2011 8:40 AM

    Oh joy! More stupid Marion Barber “dances”.

  73. madisonave99 says: Dec 7, 2011 8:50 AM

    I can see the whole “he’s trying to get one over on the Bears” argument if it was a minor injury,but this isn’t. A knee ligament sprain, especially for a RB, isn’t a sprained pinky finger. If Forte comes back before the injury is healed, all it takes is one tackle and he has a torn ligament and is done for the next calendar year. I mean can we cut the whole football meathead “i play through anything” crap” in 2011 and let good sense prevail

  74. philtration says: Dec 7, 2011 9:00 AM

    Funny…. when Jay Cutler said he does not know if he will be able to come back from having surgery on his throwing hand before the season ends you guys called him a quitter but now you support Forte even though he is not going under the knife.

    On top of that it seems that 90% of posters here still refuse to listen to the fact that the Bears offered Forte a fat contract not once but twice before the season even started.
    It was his decision to risk injury while still playing under his rookie contract.
    I thought that most of you claimed that he was NOT an elite back yet now the Bears are supposed to pay him like he is the best in the league?

    Make up your minds or at least try to read more than the headlines before posting.

  75. tshirttom says: Dec 7, 2011 9:10 AM

    All that he has given to the Bears is evidence he is a team player. He should protect himself and his future and let the chips fall where they may. He deserves a nice new contract for carrying the team.

  76. ike1973 says: Dec 7, 2011 9:12 AM

    Don’t matter, bears are done anyway.

  77. rufustfireflyjr says: Dec 7, 2011 9:18 AM

    nflfootballjunkie says:
    Dec 7, 2011 7:41 AM

    “Ever heard of a fellow named Wally Pipp, or how about Drew Bledsoe?”

    Somehow, I don’t think that Marion Barber is going to remind anyone of Lou Gehrig or Tom Brady.

  78. 202folife says: Dec 7, 2011 9:32 AM

    If the Bears wanna see him heal over night cancel the platelet-rich plasma injections and administer a new contract into his bank account. He’ll be back to 100% in no time.

  79. comeonnowguys says: Dec 7, 2011 9:34 AM

    “Funny…. when Jay Cutler said he does not know if he will be able to come back from having surgery on his throwing hand before the season ends you guys called him a quitter but now you support Forte even though he is not going under the knife”

    Your logic and common sense have no place here. Be gone.

    This is why you don’t give people like Michael Irvin and Deion Sanders a national microphone. I bet a lot “PAY THE MAN” crowd will immediately rip the Bears if they pay through the nose for Forte and he winds up getting hurt next year. Heck, look at his production since he went public.

    Just because the Bears didn’t mess their pants and offer him stupid Frank Gore and DeAngelo Williams (and they are ridiculous contracts relative to worth) doesn’t mean they’re cheap.

    Is Forte among the best the league? You bet. Is he right for wanting more money? Of course. Should he get paid a proportional ton of money? Damn right.

    The Bears made him a substantial offer, because they very much want him back. He turned it down.

    RB’s have a very short span of productiveness. With the exception of Adrian Peterson, you pay RBs what they are worth now, not what they have done. You find other ways to to show your appreciation.

    And if Cutler is able to come back before the end of the season and the lack of running game keeps the Bears out of the playoffs, it will make that craziness that surrounded Cutler last January seem like a honeymoon.

  80. kenny328usa says: Dec 7, 2011 9:47 AM

    Good for you Matt. You already went out there and laid it all on the line for an organization that refused to pay you what your worth. Now take the rest of the season to get healthy and then you can choose a different team that will compensate you fairly.

  81. weimtime says: Dec 7, 2011 9:50 AM

    @philtration – THANK YOU. Finally someone who makes sense. The funny thing is, neither side is wrong here.

    The Bears offered Forte enough guaranteed money to cover both franchise tag years and he refused to sign it, holding out for CJ or AP money. Bears aren’t wrong mortgaging their financial cap future on a very good (not elite) RB and Forte isn’t wrong waiting until he’s 100% to get back on the field.

    The only thing Forte needs to worry about, other than getting healthy, is answering to that locker room if he is healthy and doesn’t play.

  82. jcd213 says: Dec 7, 2011 9:52 AM

    Couldn’t have planned it any better, well done Forte, well done.

  83. pigskinswag says: Dec 7, 2011 10:07 AM

    This is the right thing for Matt Forte to do. Instead of getting his “Desean” on, he showed up in a contract year and has been terriffic, leading the NFL in yards from scrimmage. The injury could have been far worse, because he could have actually blown out his knee. Wait until youre 100% and don’t come back a second before.

  84. asublimeday says: Dec 7, 2011 12:19 PM

    Pay me the 600 grand forte made this year, I’ll go out there with two broken legs

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