Devin Hester, Matt Forte to sign one-day deals to retire with Bears

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Devin Hester and Matt Forte will sign one-day contracts with the Bears to retire with the organization that drafted them, the team announced Wednesday. Both players spent the first eight years of their NFL careers in Chicago.

The Bears made Hester a second-round pick in 2006, and he returned three punts and two kickoffs for touchdowns as a rookie. He also returned the opening kickoff of Super Bowl XLI 92 yards for a score.

He played three more seasons after leaving the Bears after the 2014 season, spending two in Atlanta and one in Baltimore. Hester’s final season was 2016.

The Bears selected Forte in the second round in 2008, and he played in Chicago through the 2015 season. He rushed for 1,238 yards and eight touchdowns as a rookie, one of the best rookie seasons for a running back in team history.

He spent two seasons with the Jets, announcing his retirement after last season. Forte finished with 9,796 career yards and 54 touchdowns on 2,356 attempts. He added 4,672 receiving yards on 554 receptions with 21 touchdowns.

12 responses to “Devin Hester, Matt Forte to sign one-day deals to retire with Bears

  1. Will Hester make the Hall of Fame? Forte is certainly borderline, but a case can definitely be made for Hester. He is the last great return man and I doubt we will see anyone come near his return records. Consider how much defenses LOATHED having to give him the ball. He changed the entire field at times with his presence alone. Two GREAT Bears and I thank them for their amazing play.

  2. Hester was the most dynamic returner I’ve ever seen, and Forte was a very underrated back and a classy guy just like Peanut.

  3. Love Forte, like Hester. If he was the most dynamic returner you have ever seen then you haven’t seen enough returns. Josh Cribbs returned more kickoffs for TDs, as did Gayle Sayers – who I believe also has the highest yards per return in NFL history but could be wrong on that. Hester returned more punts for TDs than anyone, but Eric Metcalf was right behind. Also a very explosive playmaker. Brian Mitchell leads them all in total yards on punt returns, and nearly doubles Hester in kick return yards. Doubles.

    So I am not sure about that HoF nod. Definitely up there, and I would support it, but he isn’t a lock in my book.

  4. ” If he was the most dynamic returner you have ever seen then you haven’t seen enough returns. Josh Cribbs returned more kickoffs for TDs, as did Gayle Sayers – who I believe also has the highest yards per return in NFL history but could be wrong on that. Hester returned more punts for TDs than anyone, but Eric Metcalf was right behind. Also a very explosive playmaker. Brian Mitchell leads them all in total yards on punt returns, and nearly doubles Hester in kick return yards. Doubles.”

    Mitchell also had double the returns than Hester, and Devin still had 6 more returns for TDs. No one stopped to watch Cribbs or Mitchell return the ball. Sayers had some good moments, with 8 TDs in 150 returns, no one remembers him specifically as a returner. Hester electrified the stands. Let’s not pretend you were in the stands watching Sayers play, much less on TV.

  5. I am also a Viking fan. I am also a huge Pro Football Fan and i loved watching these two guys play. Two of the best during their prime.

  6. NFL games start off lame. Commercial, national anthem, commercial, coin toss, commercial, kick out of the end zone, commercial…

    I am not starting my Sunday with that garbage. Bring back kickoffs!

  7. Curious about the symbolic, one day contracts to retire as a “insert team’s mascot” by a beloved player.
    Why do they do this? Is there a special ceremony to laud the player and walk down memory lane?

  8. Aska Feld says:
    April 19, 2018 at 6:34 am
    Curious about the symbolic, one day contracts to retire as a “insert team’s mascot” by a beloved player.
    Why do they do this? Is there a special ceremony to laud the player and walk down memory lane?
    —————————————————————————————-

    It’s a sign of respect offered to a player who a team felt was a large contributor but didn’t get to finish their careers for that team due to in most cases those players wanting to continue to play well past their prime. It’s sort of a symbolic “no hard feelings”. Since not everyone can be a Joe Thomas, Barry Sanders or Calvin Johnson who saw the writing on the wall and retired before their play became not worth their contracts so players would rather be remembered for their good years than their sub par years so they choose to retire in front of the fan base who saw them at their best.

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