A year ago, the Bears opted not to exercise the fifth-year option on cornerback Kyle Fuller’s rookie contract. This year, they reportedly won’t be using the franchise tag to keep him in Chicago.
Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune reports that the Bears won’t be employing that device on Fuller, the fourteenth overall pick in the 2014 draft. Biggs doesn’t rule out the transition tag as a possibility for Fuller.
As Biggs explained it, Fuller wants to stay with the Bears, and the Bears want to keep him. But Fuller doesn’t want to do a long-term deal before March 14, when he has a chance to maximize his current and future earnings.
Fuller had a strong 2017 season, stronger than the Bears expected when they chose not to exercise his fifth-year option last May. The fact that he had such a strong performance in a contract year could raise concerns that, once he achieves financial security, Fuller may be less motivated to perform the way he did in 2017.