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Bears

Forte’s Contract By The Numbers

Matt Forte.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Matt Forte. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

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(WSCR) Alas, the battle between Matt Forte and the Chicago Bears has ended.

Hours before the deadline, Forte and the Bears reached an agreement on a four-year deal worth a reported $31.5 million.

Here is the breakdown of the deal, compiled by Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune.

The base value of Forte’s contract is $28.1 million and it maxes out at $31.5 million, according to a source with knowledge of the deal. The contract guarantees $17.1 million – essentially what the Bears would have had to pay Forte if they paid him the franchise tag number of $7.742 million this season and tagged him again in 2013 at an increase of 120 percent, per the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement.

According to the source, the contract will be worth $9.8 million in 2012. Forte stands to earn $6.3 million in 2013 bringing the value of the first two years to $16.1 million. Had the Bears paid Forte the franchise tag in 2012 and tagged him again in 2013, they would have paid him $17.03 million. Forte  will earn $6.6 million in 2014 bringing the three-year total for the deal to $22.7 million. He stands to earn $7.8 million in 2015, the final year of the contract bringing him to $30.5 million over four years. There is another $1 million he can earn in incentives/escalators to bring it to the maximum value of $31.5 million.

To reach the max value of $31.5 million over four seasons, Forte will need to hit roster bonuses based on games dressed. At stake is $2.4 million over the final three years of the contract — $500,000 in 2013, $850,000 in 2014 and $1.05 million in 2015. That way Forte is rewarded for being a durable performer, something he has been throughout his career.

It was one of two running back deals done before the 3 p.m. deadline for players that received the franchise tag. The Ravens signed Ray Rice to a five-year contract with a maximum value of $40 million. Rice stands to earn $25 million in the first two years of his contract.