Matt Forte won’t be returning to the Chicago Bears for a ninth season.
The two-time Pro Bowl running back announced on Instagram Friday morning that the team informed him this week it will not offer him a contract for next season. The team confirmed it, calling him one of the “all-time great Bears.”
Despite my wishes, my days as a member of the Chicago Bears have sadly come to an end. I was informed earlier this week from the GM that they will not be attempting to re-sign me in free agency. I will remain forever grateful for my time spent in Chicago and being able to play for an organization with such a rich history. My only regret is not being able to win a Lombardi trophy for the best fans in all of sports. I'm excited about the next chapter of my NFL career. But, Chicago will always be home. God Bless and Bear Down!
He will be an unrestricted free agent and can sign with any team beginning March 9.
Drafted in the second round by the Bears in 2008, Forte emerged as one of the most successful running backs in franchise history. But he is 30 years old and the team has a long list of needs following a six-win season.
Forte says his “only regret” is not winning a Super Bowl with Chicago.
As the announcement circulated social media Matt became a trending topic.
Hey NY Giants. Sign Matt Forte please.
— Jerry Ferrara (@jerryferrara) February 12, 2016
Since his rookie year, no RB has more yards from scrimmage than Matt Forte. He AVERAGED 61 catches a year. The guy was just great. (2/2)
— Robert Mays (@robertmays) February 12, 2016