Gap Between Players and Management Effect Morale.............
Briggs: Bears players, management not on same page
Staff report 8:00 a.m. CDT, October 19, 2011
Lance Briggs did nothing Tuesday night to dispel the notion that the gap seems wider than ever between Bears players and management and team morale has suffered as a result.
Taping his CSN show "Countdown to Kickoff," two days earlier due to the Bears' London trip, Briggs suggested the unusual amount of bickering over player contracts since training camp "takes away from wanting to go out on the field and just play."
Briggs lobbied for a raise before the season, Chris Harris requested a trade after being benched and having his preseason request for a contract extension ignored and Matt Forte has been open and vocal about his desire for a new deal. Those are just the contract disputes made public.
Asked by CSN host Pat Boyle if this year was different at Halas Hall in that regard, Briggs concurred.
"I donít know about where we are right now, in the past things worked themselves out," Briggs said. "Thereís a transition going on right now in Chicago, players and management not seeing eye to eye. I donít know where itís going to go or pan out, especially for a guy like Matt Forte."
Forte, who makes $600,000 this season in the last year of his contract, has acknowledged that he's "human" but tries to limit distractions over not getting a contract extension. Briggs made it sound like an issue that has crept into the heads of several key Bears.
"I think it takes away from wanting to go out on the field and just play,íí Briggs said. "Football careers are not like normal careers. Very short, could end on any given day. It's a league about what have you done for me lately. And for (players) it's about getting what you can while you can."